Starting Back

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The best way is just to start….

I haven’t been blogging for 6 months and while I’ve planned to resume for a while, I have made excuses and avoided sitting with a blank screen in front of me. Initially when the internet failed and my travel took me away from a routine, my excuse was legitimate but as the weeks became months my excuses have had to become more creative. The problem (I told myself) is that I am not sure I have found “my voice”, I am not clear on my motivation for writing and I am drawing a blank on what my life is meant to be about….
So what would I have to say?

Without doubt this is a challenging season…. this ‘in-between’ time: as a stay at home mum I am now navigating the waters of life post-kids; as a person who poured myself out for ministry for 10 years I am discovering the loss of direction and identity that gave me; and as a person with performance orientated flesh I am now learning to live with what it means for His presence to be genuinely enough… and I am struggling with all of these….
So what could I contribute?

In this place there is no frenetic busyness to distract me from my unhealthy way of operating, no daily distractions to blame for choices made in avoiding knowing Him more deeply, no endless serving others to hide the truth that I am terribly selfish and self-absorbed….
So shouldn’t I get to the root of all my stuff before I start writing in a public space?

In addition there are plenty of people out there to compare oneself to…they have a purpose right now and even in the midst of their mess, pain and blessings are moving forward as bloggers, making a difference in the lives of those of us who read them…..And so that inner voice that is not mine, but sounds so like me, adds one more log to the fire of why there is no purpose in my starting back blogging, why I am just not good enough….
So why write at all?

And the months have rolled on….
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Today, however, I am quietly taking those thoughts captive and starting back with this confession and leap of faith!

New Ideas or Uniquely Interpreted?

It’s half way through January and ever since the 1st of the month I have been trying to figure out what ‘original thought’ I could start the year writing about. It has intimidated me.

New Years are supposed to bring new things, fresh hopes and ideas……

I have, however, realised recently that there is really nothing new under the sun….. all ideas and emotions have already been expressed by people more articulate and creative than I am and I find myself at a loss….

So instead of using energy productively and creatively my thoughts have hovered over the decision to discontinue writing and to ignore the stirring within me. On the other hand, that hasn’t rested well with me either because I do believe that while I don’t have any original ideas, I am an unique person and as a result I have a special view point that can only be heard when I step out in faith.

So, I have found myself constantly vacillating – analyzing the issue of writing with a distinctive voice and have posted nothing.
My final motivation to put pen to paper again came from an unexpected source……
This past month our Bookclub read the book “Let the Great World Spin” by Colum McCann. It is a wonderful book.
In a conversation with the author recorded at the end of the book McCann says:
One of our dusty little secrets is that… we writers don’t always know what we’re doing.  Most of it is instinct, driven by need. 
Whether it succeeds or not is entirely out of our hands.  There is the act of creative reading, and writing is more about a reader’s imagination than anything else. 
A book is completed only when it is finished by a reader.  This is the intimate privilege of art.  In fact, it’s the intimate privilege of being alive. 
When telling stories we are engaged in a democracy like no other.”
There are many aspects to this quote that are worth giving consideration to. What spoke to me, however, was the idea that writing is only finished when it is read. 

That is so huge a conception that had to be a God idea.
It means that the interpretation of what I write is specific to you and your situation. This extraordinary notion takes the burden off coming up with something originally meaningful to the reader. I write about what stirs me because of an inner compulsion uniquely mine and if you read it you will interpret it and finish my writings according to your own beautifully created life and personality.

Now that’s a weird process so massive in hypothesis that it’s fun to be part of.
The pressure is off but the desire to share my experiences, thoughts and life is stronger. 

Initial Thoughts from a Reluctant Blogger

When a good friend who cares about the welfare of my heart suggested that I use some of my time to write a blog my heart immediately responded with enthusiasm but I was also skeptical and I felt that I had nothing of value to contribute. Yet its been an idea that wouldn’t go away and I have gradually begun to understand that blogging will be “for me” and not about it having any value for anyone else.

At almost 50 I am still discovering “who I am” and what that means for my life. Part of my journey into freedom is recognizing that I want to write things down because by the very act of naming something or revealing the essence of my thoughts I am believing that I am not created for the shadows; but that who I am and my view of the world honours God, that I have a unique place and function in this cosmos.

In the light of all this it seems appropriate that I start blogging with a painting I did a few years ago on the same topic; followed by some words of a song that were also important at that time…

I am FREE TO BE ME

Sometimes I believe that I can do anything
Yet other times I think I’ve got nothing good to bring
But You look at my heart and You tell me
That I’ve got all You seek
And it’s easy to believe…
……Even though ….(Chorus)

…..I got a couple dents in my fender
Got a couple rips in my jeans
Try to fit the pieces together
But perfection is my enemy
On my own I’m so clumsy
But on Your shoulders I can see
I’m free to be me

By: Francesca Battistelli
(From the Album: My Paper Heart)