An Encouraging Word

Recently a friend, also a writer, emailed some very flattering words about my writing.  I’ll admit it; I soaked in it and re-read it several times. I am still a bit codependent that way.

Her note caused me to go back and read some of my own writings, wondering what she might have especially liked.  As I did, I ran across a couple of poems, and then, my Thirty Days of Thanksgiving, written just this last November.  I thought, that was GOOD.

That day, I was feeling especially flat and uninspired, but as I read, I could objectively see that some of those musings were quite good.  Objectively good.  It was then I came to understand a value in writing even when we do not feel as though it matters. I was encouraged and I needed to be.  Even when what we write does not seem to matter, even when we are not writing to compete or to hone our craft, we can go back and see the fingerprints of God on the hours of our lives.

This is nothing new, of course. We all know keeping a journal is valuable in our walk with God.

All that to say, just do it.  Whatever it is that God gave you to do, do it, even when you do not believe what you do is that worthwhile, or that you are very good at it, do it.  If you are a writer, write some tired old lady and tell her you admire something about her, as my friend wrote me.

I have one friend who loves to bake.  Every week she bakes friendship bread and other delicious confections for her church.

Another friend loves being involved in feeding the homeless, and so she arranged for her life skills class to make sandwiches for our church’s turn at the Salvation Army center.

Himself, my husband of 53 years, celebrates life, creation and interesting people in his photography.  There are photos in his archives that he did not enter in any competition, but when he looks back at them, he sees something really good and special that he didn’t see when he first worked on them.

Keep a record of it—a journal or a diary, so that in a month or two, when you have to look up to see the bottom, you can go back and see He was there, is there, all the time.

Probably my Calvinistic grave clothes try to keep me from enjoying my own work, which is stupid.  Nobody knows better than I do that without the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, I have nothing.  Surely glorifying God includes admiring the beauty He creates out of ashes.

That morning I wrote in my journal, “without Jesus I’m out on a turbulent sea in a leaky canoe, but in Him, I’m like a tree planted by the water; I shall not be moved.”  Truth, that!

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5 thoughts on “An Encouraging Word

  1. Thank you for all your encouraging words to me and for encouraging me to put my writings in a blog. I check my blog often to see if anyone is reading it because I am much like you–codependent, and I do go back and read my own stuff. Sometimes, I say, “That really was simplistic with no style at all.” Then, I remember that almost everything in the blog was something that God laid upon my heart to write–many times awakening me in the night to show me things. You are my hero! I would say “heroine,” but that makes it sound like you give me a high from drugs. That is not the case at all. I get a high from knowing you and reading what you write. You are truly a contact high!!!!

    • Well, there you go! You’ll notice that I noticed your comment right away! I believe the Scriptures show us the value of being connected. “That great cloud of witnesses” cheering us on includes the encouragers here on planet Earth.

  2. So true Mom! I often feel that what I am doing amounts to nothing, I so cherish those that come along side me and see things I don’t. Today I got to go back and share something with Eugene that I wrote out in a class I am taking. It was to give a testimony of trusting God, I picked my children – easy right? Every parent has to trust God with their kids, I remember writing it – as I read it today I remembered the lesson God showed me, His faithfulness.

    Sorry that was rambling, I miss you! We really need to plan a trip to Texas……

  3. I always enjoy reading your articles and poetry. Thanks so much for sharing them. And I admire you for keeping at it. More fulfilling, I am convinced, than playing Scrabble with the computer. . .

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