Okay, so the title to this post sounds like the beginning to a bad joke, but that’s not what I have in mind. For several years, however, I was both a preacher and a licensed funeral director in Kansas. It reminds me of the joke about the frustrated preacher who left his ministry to work for the local funeral parlor. Someone asked him why he quit preaching to become an undertaker. “When I straighten people out now, they stay straight,” he replied.
I’ll wait for the booing to simmer down before going on with the post…..there, let’s proceed.
You may not be tempted to leave your work as a writer to become a mortician, but perhaps frustration is boiling under the surface. Maybe you are being tempted to quit…to give up on the responsibility of being a steward of story.
Before you do, please do me this favor: take a minute to finish this sentence…”I love writing for God because______________________________________________________________________________________________________.
How has your answer changed since you felt the first spark of passion as a writer? What do you think caused the change? Is it too late to get the original spark back?
Great people of faith (see Hebrews 11) must look upon our generation in utter dismay. For them, coming into the presence of ALMIGHTY GOD was the greatest–and most reverent–experience of their lives. They longed for it and feared it at the same time. Many more imagined, but never enjoyed an encounter with their Creator. High Priests were given the singular honor of entering the Holy of Holies, perhaps only once in their lifetime. Once!
Can you imagine this conversation?
“Greetings, Brother Big-name-that-I-can’t-pronounce. Anything exciting happened for you lately?”
“Not really. Just chasing sheep all day. You?”
“Well, actually this week has been rather bland. I whitewashed my ox-cart on Monday…had lunch with the in-laws on Tuesday…met with God on Wednesday–”
“You actually whitewashed your ox-cart? That’s great!”
No one would take a meeting with God so lightly…right? How was your prayer time today? The fact is many times I either neglect to take advantage of one of the greatest–and most undeserved–privileges ever extended to me, or I enter into it with little sense of awe. That’s why this “Writer’s Prayer” is so important to me. I don’t get too far into it before I’m reminded that I’m talking to God.
As a writer, I must always remember that God is my first reader. More than that, He is the reason I write and the One that I want to please before anyone else. He’s the One that uses the stories, in ways that I can’t imagine, according to His purposes. I’m His steward, but the truth and light that I hope fill my writing are His.
God invites us into His presence, and allows us the gracious honor of coming any time we choose. I hope we don’t overlook this incredible offer. It’s significant. It matters. In fact it’s essential. So before we write stories that talk about God, let’s talk to God about our stories.