I like to write. I think one of the reasons I like to write is because it helps me think. You’d never know it reading these words right now, but between some of the words I type there exist minutes of empty space. Minutes in which I can simply process what I’ve just written and think through with precision what I’m going to write next. I can’t do that when I’m talking. No one has that kind of patience. When I write, the upside for me is that you get the message as I truly and thoughtfully want to express it, and the upside for you is that you can read a sentence in a few seconds that might have taken me minutes and minutes to think through and craft.
So it is a joy for me to sit down at my computer and plunk out words into sentences and paragraphs about the topics that flit and flitter through my brain. Writing forces me to process my ideas to the extent that I’m able to express them to other people in a way that—I hope—will make sense. In that way, writing is an outlet, a way to delve deep inside, wrestle with what’s really there, bring it up and out into the light, and examine it in the presence of others.
And I won’t lie to you. With such careful expression on my part comes the ability to show you only what I want you to see. The filter allows me to be selective, paint the picture in colors that I intentionally choose instead of just throwing open the door and letting you see a cabinet strewn with mismatched and spilled paint and old, ratty brushes.
But the truth is I think a lot more than I write. I have thoughts and emotions that simmer within, and much of those thoughts and emotions never make it to the blog. There are all sorts of reasons for that. You’ve got to be sensitive. You don’t want to hurt with your words. But what do I do with all the hurtful words I’d love to vomit all over the internet? I’m committed to keeping the blog vomit-free. So what’s a guy to do?
It occurred to me that if you believe what a bunch of ancient dead guys wrote on parchment thousands of years ago about God and a coming Savior of the world, you really do have a place for all those not-so-nice thoughts and emotions, too.
Psalms 62:8: “Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.”
1 Peter 5:6: “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.”
So we’re to “pour out” our hearts before him? Like, empty out all that’s inside us in his presence? And if it’s not blog worthy? I think the verse speaks for itself.
And, Peter, let me get this straight: We’re to cast “all” our anxieties on him? Uh, for the most part my anxieties are rooted in things that the good book calls sin—things like the fear of man and doubting God’s goodness. And you’re saying to cast—throw?!—all that stinking heap on God as if he were some pack mule who’d carry it for us?
Again, all I can conclude is that the verse speaks for itself.
So despite how much I like to put my thoughts and emotions into words and craft them just so and in just the right light, there are many, many thoughts and emotions that will never make it to the blog. But that’s OK. I’m not left having to suppress them or carry them on my own. I’ve got another outlet. His name is the Alpha and the Omega, and I’m convinced he’s big enough to handle my crap. All of it. Just the way it comes rushing out. With no edits. No purdying up. No pauses mid-thought or in between cries to find just the right word.
And the invitation stands open to you, too.