I’m not sure what it is about holiday weekends that get my creative juices flowing. I suppose it’s possible the extra 24 hours is just enough time to crack the dam that confines my unprocessed thoughts. Or just maybe (this time) it’s the celebration of “Labor” Day that brings life to thoughts that have been forming for months. Whatever it is; since I started my writing journey, just like an expectant mother I have no question when the time has come. The time to write; it’s never forced, it comes about naturally and while sometimes a pain staking process there is JOY at the end.
In June I attended a writer’s boot camp; I was excited as I took the step of faith but equally as frightened at the colossal leap outside my comfort zone. As I stepped off the plane that day; I felt empowered, like I could accomplish anything but it wasn’t long before intimidation set in as I found myself in the room with writers who were WAY more experienced. I tend to be rather quiet in group settings and as I took in my surroundings I tried to will my inner Casper to become invisible. This way I could just watch and listen but avoid small talk conversations like; “So, what brings you here to writer’s boot camp?” GULP! “Err, I’ve had a blog for 6 months.” I might as well have just said “I carried a watermelon” (for all you Dirty Dancing fans :)) it would have been just about as impressive. Now, I’m not exactly sure who I expected to show up to a writer’s conference but somehow I found myself surprised that so many were already professional writers. Did I mention, I’ve had a blog for 6 months? UGH! Paralyzing fear aside, there remained underlying excitement to be there; wondering what God had in store for me. I diligently took notes like a good student and tried to absorb every last droplet of information that was offered and attempted to compartmentalize information that I needed now, like new writing techniques and what I MIGHT need later, like self-publishing a book.
When I returned home 4th of July weekend, see, holiday weekend! 🙂 I poured my heart out into one of my best posts yet (in my 6 month writing career – wink, wink) about being Free To Dance through life and then promptly tripped right off the dance floor. I had nothing. Zippo. Silence. PING! You could hear the proverbial pin drop. “Come on Lord; people are waiting to hear about this new-found freedom I have.” So humble of me, huh? Good writers don’t get writer’s block. “Blog posts are going to be expected; I mean I did just posted all over social media I was attending writer’s boot camp.” Increasing humility, insert sheepish look. Good bloggers post several times a week. Nothing. Dead Air. My brain was a black out.
Good writers this, good writers that, good writers, good writers, good writers. My morning quiet time became stale and drab and as listless weeks turned the calendar page to September I realized I’d been approaching my time with God all wrong. Sigh. I was showing up but for the sole purpose of finding something to write; instead of savoring the connection and drinking in His presence and then gleaning soul inspiration. CRINGE. I was trying to fabricate what had been happening ever so naturally, I failed. How quickly I’d gotten entangled in the business of writing, causing a lot of busy-ness in my mind.
When I felt led to start this blog, the desire of my heart was to simply write about my faith journey. To transparently share my thoughts, feelings, insights and even questions in an effort to reveal that faith isn’t about doing everything perfect. Or having all the answers. Or never doubting. Good grief; anyone who’s spent an ounce of time with me knows I fail miserably on a daily basis, just ask my family or co-workers (I think a few of them might be readers). 🙂 I’ve wrestled with some gargantuan questions along my 33 year journey and all I want you to know is “THAT IT’S OK, it’s normal, just keep going”.
Just like I got caught up in the details of writing, questioning if I was doing this right or that good enough. We can get caught up in the busy-ness of faith; thinking we have to have it all together, doing this better or have all the answers to that before we can get down to business. People, all that is doing is keeping us from our journey, just like it kept me from writing for the last 9 weeks. Faith will require putting yourself out there; will you doubt you’re on the right path at times or have questions that go unanswered, yes you will but THAT IS OK, its normal, just keep going. I plan to do the same with my writing; sometimes it will be raw and imperfect, I could have better punctuation or edited that paragraph One. More. Time. but I will keep going. Practice won’t make me perfect but it will make me a stronger writer, as your journey will strengthen your faith, if you keep going.
God’s word to Moses as he was about to (unknowingly) set out on a 40 year journey: “My presence will go with you. I’ll see the journey to the end.” – Exodus 33:14 The Message
The same still holds true today; victories, doubts and imperfections, He will see your journey through to the end.