Today’s message may come as a shock to some of my friends in the writing world. I’ve tried to hide this part of myself from the world. Now that I’ve self-published my first book and have two more “under construction,” I’ve decided to come clean about my past.
I recall my dad sharing his dreams of writing. He majored in journalism and had a knack for putting short stories together. I will never forget how his voice sounded on the phone each time he told me of yet one more rejection letter from another publisher. I kept thinking, what a waste of time this whole writing process is…why won’t dad just knock it off with all those submissions? Can’t he understand nobody sees value in his writing? Does he really think he can make money writing?
The same voice he heard inside of him calling him to write was also gnawing at me. I learned to ignore this pesky intruder and pretend it wasn’t there. I never told my dad about the voice. Listening to it would mean giving up on my worldly dreams of becoming rich. There was no way I was going to deviate from my plans. My goals were in place and there was no room wasting my time on frivolous activities. Besides, I knew I had no talent or training for writing.
When I saw the gleam in my dad’s eyes, the day he handed over an autographed copy of his book, I realized my attitude towards writing was wrong. When dad passed away, I finally started listening to the voice in my head prompting me to write. The only problem was my time. I was so busy working long hours I didn’t have time to start any new projects.
After my dad passed away, my wife and I attended a retreat together to focus on our marriage. My time with my dad while he was dealing with terminal cancer was special, however, my family felt disconnected from me. I needed to let my wife know how special she is and the retreat was a way to spend three days with her uninterrupted.
I discovered love letter writing during our marriage encounter weekend. Each letter was designed to share our feelings and we were encouraged to be creative and descriptive. My deepest passions came to the surface and I promised my love I would never stop writing until I breathe my last breath. To date, we have now written each other a combined total of over 4,500 letters.
I confess to you today I never thought I would be getting up daily at 5:00am to write. The love letters were my introduction. The blog is God’s way of opening a door for me to develop my gifts. The memoir, “God’s Black Sheep Squadron,” is the result of saying yes to his call to publish all the good He is doing in my life. Everything I am today is because I finally accept who I am in God’s eyes.
Bless me Father, for I have sinned, and I have failed to be the person you created me to be. I put my own plans ahead of yours and tried to silence your voice each time you knocked at the door to my heart. I accept your plans for my life and promise to go wherever you send me and do whatever you ask of me. Please forgive me for being so stubborn.