I’ve been wanting to write a book most of my life, but I haven’t known what to write about. And while I’ve been waiting and wondering, I’ve written courses about writing and taught them, from kindergarten through college.
My students’ ages have varied, but the theme for the past 40 years has been the same. Whether I’ve been writing about writing or writing about something else, the common denominator for me has been obvious—writing, writing, and more writing.
When my baby went off to college, I finally had time to seriously think about the book I want to write. Children’s book? Poetry? Novel? Non-fiction? All of these. But where should I start? I couldn’t decide.
Within a week of my prayer, five different people suggested that I write or keep writing or “get your derriere in a chair and just do it.” The confirmation was overwhelming. They didn’t know about my prayer. One of them asked me why I didn’t blog. “Blogging’s for wannabes,” I said, “I wannabe a real writer that publishes things.”
“Oh,” she said. “I just thought a writer writes.”
I thought about that for a while. A writer writes. Can it be that simple? Based on that definition, I already was a writer: I’d been writing for years. A painter paints. A runner runs. A potter throws clay. Nobody has to pass a test to claim what they love. They just do it, after all. It’s not complicated.
I looked at what I’m already writing—my Bible journal. I thought about the thing closest to my heart—my relationship with Jesus. I wondered how I could combine these two things into something someone might read. Maybe my friend’s blogging idea was a good one; maybe it was even an answer to prayer.
Only, I’d have to stop being a snob to blog.
That did it. If there’s one thing Jesus is about, it’s going low and finding a humble spot. So I sat down and wrote about the experience in Chautauqua that got me serious about my time with God. That’s when I began http://onetruelove.blog, where I tell true stories of what he teaches me. And then I began http://iwantmore.blog, where I post some of my journal entries as I read through the Bible.
Last summer I started writing stories of a Lake Fairy, who leaves gifts under my grandboys pillows on our yearly trip. Now I’m working on a memoir/devotional (this is today’s entry). I’ve got children’s books running through my mind. I’ve got “Magic Rabbit and Little Jumper” stories from my children’s childhoods flying around that I’d like to grab and pen down. I’m a busy girl, a busy writer.
I could educate myself on the publishing process. I could gather up all the educational courses I’ve written and taught and try to get somebody interested. I could stop posting on my blogs and focus on getting one or both written up for a book. But it would be time consuming. I’d have to stop writing to do it.
So I’m content to be a blogger, to write for my grandboys, to be a Bible journal writer of entries, most of which no one will read, because the thing is, when I write for God, there’s all this joy that comes pouring in, and I had no idea when I started. There’s a sense that he’s with me, writing through me, giving me ideas and insights I’d never have seen on my own.
I zoom across time and space and land on his doorstep where he’s waiting. We spend time hanging out together writing. Sometimes it feels like he’s dictating, because I couldn’t think some of this stuff up. It’s beyond me. I know because I used to sit down and stare at a blank screen and not have 250 words in me that I liked.
Jesus asks Peter to follow him, but he doesn’t give Peter a new profession. He just changes what he’s fishing for. I’m guessing that the 5,000 folks who repented and believed after one sermon thrilled Peter even more than those bursting nets of fish that nearly sank two boats. Only Jesus could haul in a catch like this on both counts, Ac 4:4; Lk 5:4-11.
Without Jesus, Peter and his fishing buddies find nothing all night. But with him, they find catches beyond their wildest dreams. This is what life with Jesus is like. Bigger, Better. Richer. Fuller. Peter’s not confused about who’s the Fisherman behind the fishing men, and he’s content to follow him, because being with Jesus is more than enough.
Numbers 35-36; Luke 5; Psalm 65; Proverbs 11:23
Friendly FYI for my followers…
I’m taking a break from writing for iwantmore.blog this year and focusing on a book (or new blog—I don’t know which yet) of reflections like this one that’s based on my Bible reading. It’s more memoir than devotional, but it’s also kind of both. I’m calling it Back Roads. When I get it finished, I’ll post a link.
The story “Chautauqua” is here: onetruelove.blog.