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Day of Ash

I have a new poem over at fictionpress called Day of Ash.  It is about today being Ash Wednesday, and what the day means to me.

The explanation is a little heavier than usual on this site, so I have posted my reasons for it at Sharkbait’s Reef  if you are interested in reading about it.  Otherwise just take it as a poem, and see what it means to you. 

 
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Posted by on February 25, 2009 in Poetry & Prose

 

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Faith and Writing #4 – It’s not just about the chocolate.

It’s not just about the chocolate, but it does help. 

So when I did the crazy NaNoWriMo thing last year, and decided to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days, I knew it couldn’t be done.  But I wanted to do it anyway.  Why?  Because I wanted to be a writer,  and I wanted to write.

Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 3, 2009 in Faith and Writing

 

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Faith and Writing #3 – People need people

2008 was the first year I ever finished the insane NaNoWriMo thing.  I put this down to a number of factors:

  1. My basic genius;
  2. The bribes I was offered;
  3. The support on the forums. Read the rest of this entry »
 
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Posted by on February 2, 2009 in Faith and Writing

 

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Faith and Writing #2 – Just do it!

So when I started writing the first draft of my novel on 1 November I was really pumped. I had set myself the goal of writing 2000 words a day. On the first day I did about 5000 words by hand. That was a good day. I had visions of cracking my novel within a week, and spending the rest of November boasting about it, and letting strangers buy me congratulatory drinks.

The mood, sadly, did not last.

By week two I was working hard each day to make my average, and skipping writing altogether on some days.  I guess the thrill had gone. More importantly, the initial excitement had worn off, and now the real work began.  Working at it day after day, even when I felt no motivation, because it was something I ‘wanted’ to be doing.

Sound familiar?

When we are ‘new’ Christians, and by this I include every time we make a fresh commitment, we are usually filled with joy and determination.  This time I am going to follow Jesus, all the time.  Worship?  Bring it on!  Quiet time?  I’ll take two.  Bible study?  Just try and stop me!

And we think it’s going to last forever.   But it doesn’t, does it?  Soon I’m thinking about other things all the time, and finding any excuse to get out ouf praying.  I’ll sit up watching TV until late, and then say “Sorry, I’m a little tired to pray right now. Maybe tomorrow I’ll feel better.”

Well.  We never feel better do we?  Sometimes we just need to do it, even though we don’t feel like it.  Just like I had to keep writing, because I remind myself every day that I want to be a writer, and that I want to write.  I need to remind myself every day why I am doing this faith thing, and what I want to be.  Otherwise I become a slave to my feelings.

Matthew 7:14 says “But the gate to life is narrow and the way that leads to it is hard,  and there are few people who find it.”

121656 people started writing NaNoWriMo with me this year.  Only 21 736 made it by the end of the month.  What was the difference.  Some people lost sight of the gate, and some strayed off the path.  The rest of us did nothing special.  We just kept going, even when we didn’t feel like it.

Feelings last but a moment, eternity lasts forever.

 
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Posted by on January 15, 2009 in Faith and Writing

 

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Faith and Writing #1 – So you call yourself a writer?

This is the first post in what will hopefully be a series of thoughts on the similarities between writing, and the Christian faith.  Some of these insights came to me in November when I was trying to finish my NaNoWriMo novel, and also prepare lessons for my cell group.  Some of the insights have developed since, as I look back, and see things in a different light.

The first point is this.  What gives me the right to call myself a writer?

While I was doing the insane NaNoWriMo thing, I used to refer to myself as a writer all the time.  To everyone.  In every conversation I had.  After all, why not?  Now many would dispute my right to call myself a writer: after all, I have never written anything professionally, much less profoundly.  So what makes me think I am a writer?

Because I write.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines a writer as : a person who writes or has written something.

So I am a writer.  I am allowed to call myself a writer because I write, regardless of how bad I write, or whether my writing is of any benefit to anyone else.  I ama writer because I write, and because I have chosen to call myself a writer.  However because I choose to call myself a writer, I have to keep writing, otherwise I am just pretending.

Kind of like when we call ourselves Christians? 

I call myself a Christian, although I may very well be the worst one ever.  Just as I call myself a writer because I write, I call myself a Christian because I follow Christ.  The word Christian does not imply that I am very good at it, just as the word writer implies nothing about the quality of the work I produce.  Because we live in a world that expect so much of us, we feel as if we can’t call ourselves Christians, because we are not good examples.  But that is not how it works. 

John 1:12 says “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” – English Standard Version

Not, “to all who believed, and were really good at it”  So I guess there is hope for me yet.  I can call myself a writer, and a Christian… because I write, and follow Christ.  

 

 
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Posted by on January 13, 2009 in Faith and Writing

 

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