Why am I starting a blog?
Well, there are the pragmatic reasons of wanting to build a portfolio (almost required for someone seeking writing/editing work, especially freelance) and wanting to keep my writing muscles in shape in a forum that doesn’t print rejection letters.
Besides those, I guess the reason I write anything to publish, rather than just journaling privately, is because I’ve been given a candle to carry, a gift of words to share. I didn’t earn it or ask for it. I’ve worked to hone it, but the gift came from God, as did the responsibility to use it, rather than hide it under a bowl.
It’s scary for me to share my work, because it puts my deepest thoughts and feelings, my very self, up for criticism, which stings bitterly. But really, it’s not supposed to be about me.
Yesterday I was reading an illustration in Soren Kierkegaard’s Purity Of Heart Is To Will One Thing, about a woman who stitches a decorative altar cloth. She puts great care into her sewing, but is “deeply distressed if someone should make the mistake of looking at her art, instead of at the meaning of the cloth.”
Like that woman, I want my work to be a window, not a mirror. My writing shouldn’t draw attention to itself, reflecting your gaze back to me, like a mirror. I want it to be a window: sometimes it is smudged, cracked, fogged, or streaked with condensation, but if it is sometimes transparent enough that you can catch even glimpses of distant illuminations through it, I will have succeeded.
I hope that my words and thoughts—surprises gleaned from writing, reading, cooking, praying, hiking, doing laundry—will somehow be of help or hope to you in your daily walk.