“What can I possibly write that hasn’t been expressed a thousand times over?
This question haunts insecure writers. We lament that there is nothing new to say under the sun. Surely it’s all been said, in a lovelier way than we could ever say it, by far more eloquent voices than ourselves!
What can we hope to contribute with our words, besides more and more noise?
Adding to our collective lack of self-confidence, outside every writer’s door is a cocktail party of imagined voices gossiping loudly: “Who does she think she is? What business does she have here? Who asked for her words anyway? How is it that she was even invited to this party?”
Indeed. All the critical voices that we hear – real or imagined – are not entirely off the mark. There is some truth in every question, and an honest response is required for each one. For this writer, it is only what I think about God that cuts through the questions, separating the wheat from the chaff.
If God is who he says he is (and if I believe him) then who He says I am must also be true.
“Who do you think you are?”
I am not my own. This is my only comfort in life and death and I cannot make too much of it. I am the daughter of the living God, his beloved. His words brought me to life and sustain me today for this purpose: That I would know Him as he really is, and enjoy him forever.
And so I write. It is a means of remembering my Heavenly Father’s intention for me and all his people, from beginning to end.
“What business do you have here?”
And God saw everything that he had made, and it was very good.
Any excellence, all beauty, and every praiseworthy thing in this world comes from the hand of God. My ‘business’ is to think about these things; to use my best words to champion them, and to be about them always until my last breath.
The writing effort – the making good with words – helps me see, hear, and wholeheartedly participate in the present kingdom of God.
“Who asked for your words, anyway?”
I know he watches over me in such a way that not a hair can fall from my head without the will of my Father in heaven.
I write because this one truth deserve a million of my very best words, and then a million more.
“Who invited you to the party?”
You are a chosen generation. A royal priesthood. A holy nation. A very peculiar people.
God’s very best Word, Jesus, left his home in heaven to be born of an unmarried teenage girl in a barn. He grew up without fanfare, and even as a grown man had no home or table to call his own. This was all very peculiar.
He did this to welcome all the people – not just nobles and dignitaries and good people – to sit, eat, and drink at his Father’s table forever.
God’s very best Word, Jesus, died a commoner’s ignoble death on a cross. This was not only peculiar, but humiliating. He gave up his status, voice, rights, power, and his innocent life as a ransom for the world. Why?
Who do you think you are, Jesus? What is your business here?
And so, because of Christ, even the most insecure writer can confidently answer the questioning voices at her door. Do you not know that I am about my Father’s business?
Our lives are a living thank-you for the extravagant, unexpected, costly invitation by Christ to sit at his table. He has welcomed us as sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, to enjoy even now the place his Father has prepared for those who love HIm.
What voices do you hear as you go about your Father’s business? Do they crouch at the door, waiting to devour or demean your best efforts before you even start?
Do not fear. Answer the voices.
You are a means of grace to your people. No one can say your words to your people like you can.
What do you say, then?
Peace to you as you make this world more like the heaven it will one day certainly be.
“Go now and show the incomparable excellence and generosity of He who has called you from darkness into his marvelous light.” (2 Peter 2:10)