Why do I write?

This past summer someone put my feet to the fire and asked me why I spent so much time writing: “So what if you write. All you have left after spending on all that time are words on a page. Who cares? There are other things to do besides sit and write all day.” When I told some of my writers friends I was being criticized for being a writer, I got some fabulous feedback. Things that I believed but couldn’t think to say at the time. (I tend to freeze up when I’m confronted and only think of answers later.) I’ve kept these answers and pondered them in my heart. Writing is a solitary experience, and when someone is critical, it makes me feel even more alone. Kathy Rouser’s answer was one I absolutely identify with: “I think of Eric Liddell in Chariots of Fire, when he said that when he ran he felt God’s pleasure. Writing’s a calling, it’s a release. Words on a page make up a story that could change a life–or save one. Just like brushstrokes of paint on a canvas make a painting, if you don’t keep adding to the story and finishing it, you’ll never know what a difference could make–even just for you. And if you’re being obedient to the Lord, that’s the most important thing of all.” This is so true. I feel alive when I’m writing. If there was one thing I was born to do, it is to put words on a page. Words and letters are as much a part of me as the nose on my face. I can’t imagine a life without them. Author Rick Barry wrote: “To belittle words on a page is to belittle God. The Almighty saw fit to record much history, much revelation, and much emotion and inspiration in the form of written words. Anyone who takes the position that words on a page are pointless… I can’t begin to express the ignorance that suggests. And true, our words are not God’s divine inspired Word, but we are created in God’s image, and I believe it pleases Him when we try to be like Him, to follow His example, and to touch others with words. …Every Sunday pastors step into pulpits the world over. They deliver sermons that are nothing more than words they wrote on a page, either in outline form or in full paragraphs. God uses words to touch human beings for the better! …I can’t count the times that I have been contacted by people who have read my piddly words on a page and told me that those words worked powerfully in them, helping them to overcome...

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