It took me a few years to get serious about writing. Like most writers, I questioned if my writing voice could possibly be important to the world. Especially today with all the self-published books on Amazon because the need for a royalty publisher is no longer necessary for publication. In the beginning, it seemed overwhelming and futile. Who would be interested in what I had to say? I didn’t have a university degree. I wasn’t a good public speaker. What did I have to offer?
Thankfully, a friend who’s a clinical psychologist suggested what I’ve since heard from many seasoned writers: write what you know. That took a while to figure out because my low self-esteem just stared at the blank page where the long list of my attributes was supposed to be declared.
I knew God had created me to be unique and had given me spiritual giftedness, but I struggled to see any of those at work in my life to the point where I felt others would be interested in anything I had to say. But God was at work breaking down the self-doubts and insecurities. I prayed for clarity, not only to find something to write about but also something that would honour Him. After all, I knew that was why I was alive in the first place. I started back at the beginning of my life and wrote down what I’d learned over the vast array of experiences.
My list began with my uncommon survival in the womb and spanned my childhood daydreams, motherhood and numerous jobs and career changes. I wrote beside those, listing how God was present and how I could glorify Him in that moment. The list continues today with many files on my laptop: ideas for novels, poems, and blog posts. God has been walking this journey with me and, if I listen, He draws me in to write about His love for me and how that may matter to others.
How One Voice Mattered in History
Does one small voice really matter in the mass of literature available today?
I recently heard a sermon by Pastor Jon Thompson of Sanctus Church. He listed people throughout history who had made a difference with their one voice.
I researched them from the Office of the Town Clerk in Middleton, Massachusetts.
In 1876, Samuel Tilden won the presidential popular vote but came up one electoral vote shy and lost to Rutherford B. Hayes.
In 1941, Congress amended the active-service component of the Selective Service Act from one year to two-and-a-half years by one vote, 203 to 202.
In 1977, Vermont State representative Sydney Nixon was seated as an apparent one vote winner, 570 to 569. Mr. Nixon resigned when the State House determined, after a recount, that he had actually lost to his opponent Robert Emond 572 to 571.
In 2008, an Indian politician named C. P. Joshi lost by a single vote pursuing an assembly position in the North West Indian state of Rajasthan. In the final tally, Joshi fell to opponent Kalyan Singh Chouhan by a count of 62,216 to 62,215. Reportedly, Joshi’s wife, mother, and personal driver failed to show up on election day. (That must have been a quiet dinner!)
And then there’s one of my favourite voices …
Queen Esther persuaded her husband, Persian king Ahasuerus (Xerxes I), to retract an order for the general annihilation of Jews throughout the empire. This was at great risk to her life.
Now, there’s one person with one voice making an enormous difference to a nation of people!
Why Your Voice Matters
All we need to remember is this: we write because we’re listening to the voice of the One who called us to this in the first place. Our audience of One. Our Lord. If our story, our poem, our blog didn’t matter, God wouldn’t waste our time and talent because God never does anything without specific intent. As the saying goes,
“If God called us to it, He’ll see us through it.”
Yes! Your voice matters! If God has given you something to write, then obedience is the only answer. I often say that if even ONE person is blessed by something I’ve written then I have done my job.
I totally agree, Tracy. Even just ONE 🙂
I am reminded of seeds. Each small action can plant a seed in the mind of a reader. Whether we write, speak, or create in any way, we are planting something good if God is behind it.