Blog 1306 – 04.07.2019
Why I Write
For someone who started out as a very poor and reluctant reader one might ask why write. Well, the short answer, not my strong suit, is because I can and because I think I have something worth sharing. That is also the reason I speak, sing, and try to teach. It is a common malady of us older folks, this deep desire to spare others the harder learned lessons. I can still hear my daddy pleading with a nineteen year old version of myself, “Son, you don’t have to make all the mistakes, you could learn from some of mine if you just would.” But like so many younger people then and now I was in too big a hurry to live my own life to listen and thereby spare myself a lot of unnecessary trouble and heartache. It is not just younger people who do not listen or read. We are all of us guilty of speaking more than we listen and being in too big a hurry to pay attention to the warnings of those who love us most.
As a further example along this train of thought, I use an old school illustration. Most everything comes or used to come with an installation and instruction manual. You have to go online to find them these days but they still exist. Still how often we fail to take the time to familiarize ourselves with that important information about the products and just plow right in till we have to stop and figure out what we did wrong. It is definitely one way to figure things out, this trial and error method. But somebody took the time to research and write it all out for us step by step so that it could go and can go so much smoother if we avail ourselves of that information.
I write because I want to share and to spare – share all the fun facts I have picked up along the way and spare some of the more painful and hard taught lessons I have learned. As the wise/foolish kidnapper in the movie The Princess Bride says, “Everybody knows you never start a land war in Asia.” That was a tongue in cheek reference to our Vietnam debacle. One could easily write a very large book about “What Everybody Knows But Does Not Really.” Perhaps I will someday, or perhaps this daily blog of mine is but a series of chapters in what may one day comprise that book.
I have used the illustration more than once that all writing is to some degree like putting a note in a bottle and throwing it out upon the ocean. Every writer hopes his words will somehow reach their intended audience. That is such a good thing when it happens, when a writer and a reader really connect.
I am not foolish enough to believe that everything I write always hits the mark but then I am wise enough to keep trying and to keep hoping that some of the things I labor over in love will make a difference in someone’s life. They certainly have already in mine. I write because I cannot imagine myself not writing. It is for that reason I get up before the sun each morning, to share my light.
No greater testimony do I desire than the words Jesus said of his cousin, John the Baptist, at John’s death: “We were content to rejoice in his light for a while.” For all I have learned both the hard way and from others experiences a little chorus I learned as a child still rings truest in my heart, “This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.”
Your friend, fellow traveler,
And fellow bearer of the light,