Why do I write?

Why do I write?

This question has followed me around lately. Does putting things into words cheapen them or ripen them? Am I penning thoughts to be read or to be real? Is the crafting of sentences overshadowing the feeling I'm seeking to get out there? Is the act of writing leading to a life of overthinking and psychoanalysis? Am I looking for something to write about or am I letting things naturally run their course? Do I have an agenda just underneath my words? Am I trying to impress as I undress my heart for all to see? Do I think I'm altrustic when I'm really egotistic? I'm I putting on a performance trying to arouse a response? Do I reduce the sacred to the common, profaning the hallowed subjects of life with empty words? Do I think I'm kissing my heart when I'm really killing my heart? Does my audacious pursuit of honest living come across to others like a false humility with a spoonful of shock value thrown in for good measure? Am I trivializing my marriage by bearing my heart's desires for my wife...should that be kept under wraps for us to share in secret? Does sharing my poetry online discredit the intimate nature of the thing itself? Is the rehearsing of my day the poisoning agent that reduces the beautiful nuances of life into words, thus raping the memory of it's simple and precious value? Am I turning people and dreams and thoughts and aches and beliefs and passions into mere propaganda? As it says in the Scripture, am I peddling the Word of God for profit? Am I peddling words for some human gain, am I?

I hate thinking (overthinking) about these questions. The paranoia that surfaces disables me. It makes me want to quit anything that could be misconstrued. My life takes a bitter turn toward "premeditation" on the front end, "psycho-evalution" on the back end. I'm caught in a vicious cycle of projection/introspection/retrospection. Worrying before, during and after everything I do, say, write, sing, think, etc. Before long, what starts as a seed of questioning motives morphs into a massive civil war of the soul. I start to stop trusting myself. I start to stop trusting others. I start to stop trusting God. I live in a queer fear of what I may not know that I don't know about what I don't see that I don't see. I'm looking over my shoulder...second-guessing every infinitesimal movement or mood or method to my madness. And madness is what life becomes.

Blogging poses a unique dilemma. I journal publicly. I muse in the open about my deepest thoughts. Is this an oxymoronic behavior? I crack open questions that are currently unanswered wondering if in the asking I will find what I'm looking for. Disclosure. That is what I'm aching for...a revealing of my gritty, unkept, disheveled self so I don't have to dwell in maniacal isolation. I don't trust myself when I don't expose myself to public scrutiny. I don't trust what secrecy will do if it has its way with me. I don't trust the gospel I'm sharing if my life doesn't have a place to run and play and cry and laugh. It is then that words scare me and I'm suspicious of myself. Composure provides a privacy that is seductive...I sometimes feel that I hang myself as I share my thoughts. No one is making me do this. I'm doing this to myself.

I'm just wrestling with this today...I suppose some of it comes from my life verse...

"We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us." - I Thess. 2:8

Sharing my life (the safe as well as the dicey parts) is not negotiable. I feel so much of my life I looked at people and only saw the surface issues addressed. Very few would let you into the messy core of their being. Very few would expose those places that throbbed with fury and fear and fire and faith. Very few would engage life on the level of reality...and I was left playing with fantasy. Fantasy is the world in which we will live until, or unless, our deepest thoughts meet something or someone to attach to that isn't afraid to go there (wherever the "there" is that you may need to go). I owe a great debt of gratitude to the few souls along the way that have risked their own reputations to engage the unspoken worlds often left uncharted. When those worlds are left uncharted, lives are left unchallenged. And when lives are left unchallenged, they are sadly left unchanged.

Why do I write? That's a good question.

Comments

KJR said…
Jason...

You don't know me, I graduated from Cornerstone last spring and was in Beach's spiritual formation class. You came and spoke once, gave out your web address and I've been mildly faithful in reading it. I've always been challenged by your words and I read your post this morning and had some thoughts (I even hesitantly created my own blog just to comment on yours). :) Your words sometimes to me are my devotional for the day, they challenge me as you talk about life, love, relationships with God, your wife and your children. You spur me on to live the deeper life instead of simply surviving which can be so tempting sometimes. I live life in extremes and to be honest - it's exhausting. I get tired occasionally and will fall into a rut of floating through life instead of living it. Like I'm a ghost or something. Anyways, my point is: thanks for writing, it must be difficult to be vulnerable, to be open, and I can relate to those same feelings. Almost as though you were some actor in Hollywood or something. But what you write does have a significant impact. While I can only speak for myself, I don't take your words lightly. Your words are not cheap, I realize they come at a cost and I recognize the value. So... trite but true: thanks.
Jecca said…
kjr, perfectly said. i echo her sentiments whole-heartedly.
DanielSon said…
I am constantly wondering if I should guard myself more, I often feel so comfortable around people that I just expose heart to everyone making myself very vulnerable. However the intimacy that ensues because of openness is priceless, I'm sure you know what I am talking about. Jason your openness also spurs others onto Godliness, which I appreciate greatly! Love you bro!
-Dan
PS~ Live in such a way that you become the scum of the Earth. (our verse in Corinthians)

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