Why write? It can seem, in one’s own limited horizon, that unless writing brings you wealth, it serves no purpose. If a magazine won’t stick your name on the cover of its issue and circulate it to 30,000 subscribers who are looking for that one svelte voice, then there’s no reason to write. You may feel that if you can’t put something big in print that reverberates across the continent, then you’ve wasted your time. It can seem to the lonely writer that the big break is what writing is all about; or in the publishing world, the next big story is the only story that matters.
But the wealth of writing cannot ever be measured in terms of money. Writing is savored in the details one finds along the way, where a different kind of currency is paid to the woman whose heart and hands have been bloodied by ink.
A woman fixes a cup of chamomile tea in her favorite Tigger coffee cup, moseys through the hallway adorned with pictures of her and her grandmother in their trip to Sea World, sits at her three-legged desk that had long ago been thrown away–a tall pottery plant serving as the fourth leg in which grows a passion lily–and she opens her Macbook to work on a savory paragraph, her Tigger cup steaming beside her. Thus begins the currency of joy paid out to her liberally as she creates. The details of her life become intertwined with the details of her story, and both reward her.
Writing is a journey. This is the greater pleasure. It’s like a golf course with no end, played in segments, where not only the story itself but all of life in surround is chunked together, from one hole to the next. Storytelling is relishing the slow timing of things, the fluttering grass, the echo of wind through the pine, the smell of the water, the pure white ball resting on the tee. Living, breathing, soaking in life—this is the wealth of writing, absorbing detail after detail, stacking them up as deeply as one can stack them. Every stroke of insight is a destination to be savored.
Put simply, writing is amassing jars of slowcream joy. In those jars are the good feelings and dreams, treasured hopes, growing wisdoms, shivers of courage, conquered fear. Healing jars. Saffron yellow with light. All of us have so many of those jars lying around that it will take an eternity to pour them all out.
And where would they all flow? To Jesus. A Man thirsty to drink up our lives. You may surmise that He, when He wrote His Word, that He wrote it one person at a time, Himself savoring each and every creation, the wealth given to Him by His sacrifice.