Seems obvious now, doesn't it. :) After yesterday's blog on A False Identity, where I shared that I realised I'm not an introvert, as life taught me to be, but an extrovert, as God created me to be: What was missing? Me! :)
I was sitting on my lounge just now, working on finding greater depth for the characters of a novel I'm working on, creating a more in-depth background for them, when I wondered why these characters were no longer working for me. I mean, I was well into the fifth chapter, and I like the characters. She's sweet.He's considerate. I understood her heartache, and I loved him for wanting to rescue her from it. It was, after all, a 'sweet romance' I was working on and they fit in very well. But, this morning, prior to spending more time on their background, I found myself yawning at their exploits and, I was shocked to discover, at some of their feelings. I mean, I liked them, they're lovely - both have great hearts, but *yawn*. Why was that?
Taking it to God, I asked why I was struggling to continue this novel with the characters as they are, and He pointed out that I'm writing with a new heart. Gosh, that excited me. :)
In thought, I looked and saw, as though watching from a distance, 'me' rising up from a fog. I felt 'her' strength, 'her' passion, sensed 'her' voice, and realised that "I" am missing from my writing because I was missing from my life. All those years of wondering what was missing, while trying to fit into whatever box "man" had made for me - and through all those years where I knew I couldn't stand to be in anyone else's box so I tried to build my own - it was me who was missing. Not God. Not love. Not anything, but me.
Yesterday I feared people's reactions to what I write. I mean, I am a Christian but I don't write for a Christian audience. Not in the novels I've been working on, anyhow. Here, yes. In short stories I've put online, yes. But not in my novels. There will be a day where I focus on the Christian genre and the romances that will go with that, but at the moment that's not where my heart/passion/muse calls me. Part of me feared writing of intense passion and "non-Christian" behaviour, because I figured most people I know would be expecting Christian purity. But that's not reality to me and I must write what I know...But, again, I feared responses so I dulled it down. Today, I have stepped out of another box - a self-imposed one, I reckon, but one I felt I needed to be in. Today, I want to write from the depths of my passion, no matter what that looks like, fearing no one's response. I want to put more energy into my characters. More passion. And give them no fear with it.
My reasons for writing haven't altered: I write because passion calls me to do so; because I know God has gifted me to do so; because I want to reflect the true love, hope, mercy, grace, healing and passion God has given me. I just don't want to do that in a typically Christian or religious sort of way.
When God found me (or, when I cried out to Him and finally let Him in), it was in my brokenness. Brokenness brought on from my sins. 22 years later, although I'm far from who I used to be, and forgiven of much, I'm still not perfect. I'm still not without sin. I still know fear. I am still human. I know what God calls us to, but I also know what I am without Him. Because of this, because of who I was, where He found and what He has released me from and blessed me with, and because of who I still am with and without Him, I want to reach into the hearts of the lost, the broken, the fearful and so on. I want to give my heart and hand to them.
I want to remember where I came from and, though healed of brokenness, I want to write from that darkness I've known in order to give light to those who are crying out for hope, healing and freedom. I write to give hope. I write to tell 'someone somewhere' that pain passes, that love comes around again, that each day is a day full of possibilities, and that a lost dream doesn't mean the end of the road. But I don't want to do that just for Christians, so I have to do that in ways I know of beyond our faith. You know what I mean? I have to make myself relatable to a non-Christian audience - even though I am sure most Christians could relate, too. While not being 'me', I struggled with that voice. I kept trying to put me and my voice back in a box. I find, today, I don't want to do that anymore. I'm not afraid anymore.
What's missing from my life now? Nothing that I can feel. And where that yearning once was - the cry for 'whatever is missing' to come find me - there is now a knowing that I've found what I've been looking for. I have plenty of room for growth as I take on this new me. God knows I have to learn to walk in my own shoes. ;) But I don't fear it as I once die. I am excited over it. I want me. I want my voice. I want to take what's in my heart and in my hand and, through an earnest desire to pass on true love, do what I know God's gifted me to do: Write, Love, and Live - with passion. :)