It happens to me nearly every time I sit down to write, whether I’m writing a sermon or attempting to write a blog post. There is a moment in the writing process where I stop writing, close the computer, and stare off into nothing. The thoughts that are parading through my mind include things like, “Why would anyone read this?” “Someone else could preach this so much better than I.” “What do I have to offer on this passage that someone else hasn’t put forth in a much better way?” “Why write on the same thing that everyone else has already written on.” “Who am I to think I have something to say about this?”
Sometimes, through prayer, discipline, and grace (and often with a few tears) I push through and finish writing what I started. Many times, however, I never move past that moment. That sermon gets pushed back to work on at another time and that blog post becomes a one paragraph document on my desktop.
The other day I was driving to Chipotle with my wife and we were talking about her latest article posted at FTC. I asked her, “If you were to write a book right now, what would you write on? She quickly pounced on the question with two ideas that she is passionate about. I found her answer intriguing because I’ve been asked that question many times and I have never had an answer. I explained this to her and somehow it lead into a 45 minute conversation that took place outside of Chipotle, in line at Chipotle, and on the way home from Chipotle. (If you are going to have a conversation about your insecurity and brokenness, I recommend having it with a side of Chipotle.)
The gist of the conversation is that I have much insecurity when it comes to the value of my input and wisdom. I always feel there is someone smarter, wiser, more experienced, and better qualified than I to speak on an issue. Do you know the truth? The truth is that there is always someone smarter, wiser, more experienced, and better qualified than I to speak on an issue. The question is not whether that belief is true or not, but what will I do with that belief.
To this point, I have typically let that belief birth insecurity, shame, fear, and silence within me, when the appropriate response is to humbly and thankfully speak and write in obedience and worship to God. My wife challenged me to write as worship, not as instruction. To be more focused on what is taking place in my heart as I pour it out on paper (whether that is in sermon form or blog form) and trust the Spirit to use it to speak to others as well.
We all have a voice. We all have a platform. We all have a calling to worship God with our words and to declare God with our words. We all have someone who will listen to what we write and say. His name is Jesus. He listens to our words and if they are words of worship and declaration of him, then he is pleased. So be encouraged, you already have your first “Like," “Star," or “Share." He is pleased when we make much of him. So start with worshipping him. But each of us also has a voice with someone else. Someone will listen to you. Perhaps your audience is thousands, and perhaps your audience is your mom and your grandma. Whomever it is, bless them by declaring the goodness of God to them in your writing.
Be encouraged. We’ve all been called to worship and we’ve all been called to declare God’s goodness to the world. Focus on that, and you will have a voice to be heard.