Why don’t I just invite you into the story. I was content, in a cozy and selfish way, just letting the words escape like small bursts of steam into Facebook status updates. There were times when my husband came into the room as I was crafting a status. He’d go about his business, leave, and come back a while later, my hands yet hovering over the keyboard with a furrowed brow and intent look in my eyes.
“You’re still writing it?”
Words are powerful, even when spilled into digital bits that a few hundred might take note of. I have felt the weight of uttering them, of sending them into news feeds, right there into people’s homes, presenting themselves to souls ever-living.
Would that I would have such a tight rein on my tongue always. With my husband of thirteen years and my four children. Would that I would measure the impact of each word before speaking it, that I would take time to make it come out as a touch of love and healing rather than a shove or bark. Room to grow, there.
Well. The friends near and the friends far, they encouraged, they cajoled, they scolded; they thought the words had a way. I made an unambitious stab at getting published (submitted to one publisher) and heard, by-the-by, that they decided to no longer publish that genre. I could now tell everyone that I had tried; now I could get back to the less perilous task of crafting thoughts on Facebook.
Have you ever felt God’s patient expectancy? It is like when you’re a kid on the high dive. Toes on the edge, another kid gripping the metal ladder behind you, awaiting their turn. You feel their readiness for you to jump. No one comes up and pushes you off. You really could turn around and awkwardly bypass the waiting one. Excuses could easily drop from whitened lips.
Or, you could fulfill the expectation. Oh, how the stomach knots. Something vital must be smothered, some self-preserving instinct muffled so that you can sink your weight down into your legs, coiling for flight, riding the echoing force up, and leaving sure ground. They say it’s like being weightless, but it is instead the very definition of weight, of gravity, the hard pull down. We never notice gravity until we are helpless against it.
It isn’t freeing to write. It is weighty. It is heavy. By opening my story to you, I’m sure of more weight, more consequence. Lord, have mercy.
With barely a sound I’ve left the board, surrendered to gravity’s hard come-along-then. And I feel Him smile, smile as He grips the ladder.