Posted by: alliehope | April 5, 2008

On (Not) Writing

I know I’ve gone really quiet the past few days. There’s really no good reason for it; only a ton of excuses. However, I’m finding more and more that I need the discipline of this to keep me going, specifically since it acts as an outlet, even if very few people (and you know who you are, muchas gracias!) read it. I was talking to someone at Willow Chicago last night after our Philippians study and realized something that I’d not ever really allowed into the realm of my consideration: writing is to me what the third rail is to the CTA: it is the electricity that supports me. When I don’t write, whether it’s here, my oh-so-analog pen and paper journal or writing poetry, I feel like I’m starting to unravel, since I have no outlet for my thoughts and any creative energy in me goes untapped.

I was thinking about all this last night in the context of the Philippians study that I’m part of, and came back to the thought that I will be held accountable someday for this gift that God gave me. I don’t want to stand before Him and have to explain that out of fear, laziness and an unwillingness to risk sharing the gift, I ended up squandering it, and the impact it could have had went wasted. The thought is sobering, and it’s a massive wake-up call.

Standing in Holy Presence
My soul trembling though forgiven
Is now called to answer for its deeds

The thought of the Father’s love
Compels me to tell the truth
Of the days I have left unlived

Of the gifts I never gave
The words I never spoke
The impact I never had

Because I was too wrapped up in myself to care.

The sadness in the eyes of my Creator
Brings tears to my own (are there tears in Heaven, after all?)
And I fall to my knees.

I pray with this vision before me
That I might say the words I need to say
Give the gifts I was made to give

Have the impact I was meant to have
Live the way I was meant to live
So that I will hear the only words that truly matter:

“Well done, good and faithful servant”.

This thought comes from several places in the Bible, most notably 2 Corinthians 5:10, and Matthew 25:14-30. The passages always used to scare me, since I thought that they meant I could lose my salvation, based on the things I had done in this life.

But I now understand that this can’t happen. What the “judgment seat of Christ” is about for me as a believer is about evaluating what I’ve done with what God has given me, and what will last for eternity. The fascinating 1 Corinthians 3:10-15 passage lends a lot of creedence to this, since it doesn’t say that one’s salvation is dependent on what he or she does. One’s salvation is, like a duplicate of a check, “not negotiable”.

So what does all of this have to do with whether I write or not? Everything. I really have come to understand that this is one of the ways I “build” (to borrow Paul’s metaphor), for the Kingdom of God. I now know that this is a way I can serve as well, and use my gifts for His glory.

This knowledge, then, isn’t so much fear-inducing as it is awe-inspiring. When it’s all said and done, I can’t think of anything greater than to have the God of the universe look at me and say “Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!” (Matthew 25:21;23). This, then, is the ultimate compliment; compared to it, anything the world could say sounds hollow, like an echo in the Grand Canyon. I want so much to live so that it can be said of me.



  1. I miss your posts.

  2. I miss reading your blog. Long time since you posted something.

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