What? Someone else just launched a blog? Make that blog number 164,586,782. Someone just published a book? Great! Now, there are ONLY 138,461,822 books in the world. Come on? Do we really need someone else writing a book? Do we really need someone else launching a blog (he asks in a blog post!)?
Hasn’t everything people need to hear already been said?
And further, isn’t publishing your thoughts and words rather audacious? Isn’t it a kind of arrogance to think that your words need to be heard, that your words carry some kind of weight and importance?
I expect virtually every would-be writer has tossed one or more of those questions around in his/her mind. I certainly have. Philip Yancey and Simone Weil (yes, two writers) point a wonderful light into the dark of those questions:
“Every writer must overcome a kind of shyness, putting out of mind the fear that we are being arrogant by thrusting ourselves upon you the reader, and egotistical by assuming our words are worth your time. Why should you care about what I have to say? What right have I to impose myself on you? In another context, Simone Weil presents a kind of answer: “I cannot conceive the necessity for God to love me, when I feel so clearly that even with human beings affection for me can only be a mistake. But I can easily imagine that he loves that perspective of creation which can only be seen from the point where I am.” That is all any writer can offer, especially a writer of faith: a unique perspective of creation, a point of view visible only from the point where I am.” (Philip Yancey, Soul Survivor: How My Faith Survived the Church, Random House)
That is all any writer can offer…a unique perspective of creation, a point of view visible only from the point where I am. I love that.
And this is what I should have recognized all along. Every word we ever utter has an audacity to it. Everything we say or write carries a presumption that it is worth being heard. Every “I love that picture” Facebook note is presumptuous. Every handwritten “thank you” is imposing. Every “I learned something interesting last week” conversation is audacious.
In reality, every time we say anything, we betray the belief that our words matter.
And they do!
This is at the heart of the Christian story of the world. Every person on the planet is someone made in the image of God, and our every action and word has a weight to it. We were made to speak. Our words matter and—whether heard/read by one person or one million—they have the power to influence. Speaking and writing are very important.
This does not mean our words are always right, nor does it mean we should speak incessantly or thoughtlessly. The Bible itself admonishes us to be quick to listen and slow to speak. We dare not utter every word that comes to mind, but we dare not clam up either, assuming we have nothing worth hearing.
So compose a note. Write a blog post. Text a classmate. Draft an article. Tweet. Write a book. Post a note. Call a friend. You have a unique perspective of creation that someone else needs to see.