Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sunsets








Some of my favorite sunset pictures I've snapped over the years.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Feels Good

Rachel was twelve years old when she discovered that she could put someone in jail.
Bill Lotznica was chattering on the TV about how the bucket-dumping rain had caught him off guard. He had only yesterday given the entirety of Greenville County the go ahead to plan their Labor Day picnics.
The apple berry pie didn’t taste nearly as good to Rachel sitting in the middle of the living room as it would have on a picnic bench fending off ants. She lifted the fork, pressing her tongue into the prongs to extract every smudge of the sweet sauce and flaky crust. Holding it up to inspect her work, she caught sight of old Bill on the screen trying to smile his way out of his mistaken forecast yesterday; the prongs of the fork gave the impression that he was behind bars.
She grinned—realizing that she had just put someone in jail. For a moment she sat there imagining him behind bars, serving a life sentence, his only bail or bond was telling the truth. Of course, he would be in there for life—weathermen never told the truth. Even when she thought of him as her father, whom he would be when he got home, she still didn’t feel the least bit enticed to lower his cage. She had learned to never trust him—his smile was just as charmingly sweet when he was lying at home as when he was lying on TV.
She frowned; he looked much too happy behind the bars anyways, so she laid back against the couch. But how good it felt just for that minute to see the bars across his face, with her looking in and him looking out.

Twenty years later.

It just feels good, you know?” Rachel pushed past an orange jumpsuit clad man being escorted into the court room, and then reached into her leather side bag to retrieve a cup of Yoplait yogurt.
“You need to find a new phrase.” April, her best friend and assistant struggled to keep up with Rachel’s stride. “You say that after every case.”
“And it’s still as true.” Rachel tore the tinfoil top off the yogurt and began eating.
April rolled her eyes. “I’ve never seen anyone so excited about people goin’ to jail. You aren’t suppose to have food in here, you know.”
Rachel grinned, looking over her shoulder at her assistant. “You need to get a new line. You say that after every case.” She raised her container. “Whiskey for my men, beer for my horses, and yogurt for me." She popped another mound of the fluff in her mouth.
“Okay, Willie." April rolled her eyes. "Just don’t forget you have that meeting with the new client today.”
“I know, I know.” They pushed through the doors to the autumn sunlight and crispness waiting just outside.
“I love this weather” Rachel tilted her head back. “I’m gonna dig out my scarf this afternoon--the purple one.”

Back at the office, Rachel plopped down. Court dates invigorated her, but left her crashing right after. Even with her confidence, she still sweated through three layers of jackets and shirts.
Five years she had been working as a domestic issues lawyer, dealing mostly with battered women wearing snot-stained shirts, holding little snotters on their hips, and dodging the ogres whom had driven them to her office—-ogres who didn’t see or chose not to see the priceless treasures they had married.
It was usually abuse; verbal, mental, and physical—abuse was abuse to Rachel. She looked up at the corkboard on the wall. April always carried a small Kodak camera with her to capture victory shots after Rachel’s cases. The board was covered in snapshots of happy faces with empty eyes. As if they knew they had won the battle, but ultimately had lost the war.
Of course, she had handled ‘cats’ too—-of all kinds. Some wanted money, others wanted children, houses, or revenge. But after all the party line junk about making people happy, Rachel wanted something else-—truth. Something she had rarely been given in life.
“He’s here.” April’s chirpy voice interrupted Rachel’s thoughts.
“He who?” Rachel tried to remember, but nothing was coming. “Your new client. I told you he was coming.”
Rachel rolled her eyes. “I totally forgot.”
“What! You, forget something?” April’s sarcasm melted into a smile as Rachel eyed her.
“Don’t forget who writes your check, pal.”
“Yeah, well you don’t forget who keeps your life together enough so you can write that check!”
Somehow they always reached a stalemate; they both needed one another. “I don’t have time for an afternoon of lies.” Rachel groaned. She jerked the gray suit jacket from the back of the chair and stuffed her arms in the sleeves.
“Someone is going to tell you the truth someday, girl.” As April walked around the desk to help with the jacket, she asked gently, “Are you going to be able to believe them?”
Rachel turned her back to her friend, letting April fix her collar. “That’s my worst fear.” Rachel stared out the window absently. "That I'll have to trust someone."
“Well, you trust me enough to believe that I’m not going to stick a 'kick me' sign on your back.”
“That’s different, April. You’re a woman.”
April laughed at her friend’s prejudice. “You don’t hate, Mark.”
Rachel grinned at the sound of April’s husband’s name. “No, but I’m glad he’s yours.” April shook her head in exasperation. "How long are you going to stop judging all men by your father's faults?" "When men stop being men, that's when." Wanting to change the subject, Rachel shrugged her shoulders one more time to get settled into her jacket. “All right—send in the clowns. I’m ready.” She let out a deep breath and settled back in her chair, assuming her most intimidating pose.
She heard April greeting him in the lobby and pointing him toward her office.
When he walked in the door, Rachel saw that he was young, early thirties, with thick dark eyebrows and freckles and a artifical confidence that would shatter under one line of her biting sarcasm. Rachel turned on a professional smile and stuck out her hand.
“Thanks for agreeing to meet with me, Miss Lotznika."
Rachel cringed. “Please call me Rachel. It always sounds like people are choking on razorblades when they say my last name.” Pleasantly surprised at the comfortable laugh that followed, she motioned for him to sit in one of the leather chairs, eager to get to the point. “So what do you need me to do for you?”
He settled back in his chair, and blinked twice before stating, “I need a little peace in my life.”
“I don’t keep an extra dose of that lying around.” Rachel folded her hands on the desk. “A house divided is sort of my job.” She shrugged. “However, I can get you just about anything else, short of blood.” He raised his eyebrows. Yeah, she knew she was good.
“It’s not about what I want. It's just sort of about--the way things are.” He blinked a few times as if they were stinging with tears. She immediately warded off an urge to pity him. A man was a man; they couldn't be trusted.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Saving Trees


I'm amazed at the latent memories that live inside me, waiting to pop back up at minute provocation. Sometimes I lie awake at night trying to raid those dark corners of my mind where memories huddle. I attempt to find one that I didn’t even know was there. But typically new memories refuse to be stirred without being conjured by a smell or sound or song or texture. Recently, one such little memory was summonsed when I saw the trunk of an old tree covered in leafy growths.
I vividly remember the day that Dad first told me about them, when I was a little girl. He pointed them out to me on the oak tree in the front yard. Sapsuckers, he called the yellowish-green leafy growths parasitically growing from the bark. He plucked one off and told me that they were draining nutrients from the tree. Indignation filled my four-year-old heart. That anything would latch onto something else to sap it of its strength appalled me. Viciously I’d vindicate that and every other tree in our yard, tearing at the sapsuckers, ripping out as many as I could reach. It became my mission to save every tree within my little sphere of influence.
I wish that I would feel the same indignation at the ‘sapsuckers’ that daily attach themselves to my heart. The sordid television shows, no matter how briefly I may watch them; the advertisements that assault me at every turn; negative people; my own selfishness and sin—all of these latch onto my soul and drain me of my energy, my tenderness, my joy, my innocence, my fervor. Periodically, I have to strip the ‘trunk’ of my heart of these parasitical entities—and I wish to do it with all the fervor of a four year old, trying to save trees.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Pictures of beautiful little things





I shot these out and about my town.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Life is my Marah; You are my Tree


The other day I began wondering where my summer went in such a hurry. But then I flipped back through my calendar pages to find my summer hiding among the penciled in appointments and plans that cover each calendar square over the past 3 months. It’s been a filled summer and a full summer. And in it, I have met so many beautiful people—-so many, in fact, that now my most serious concern is finding enough time to spend with each of them. But it's a pleasant chore, making room for new friends.
God has often, in my life, used friends for medicinal purposes, almost as anesthetics when life hurts or when I need to be distracted from the hard parts. This summer has been no different. In ways they don’t know, the people I’ve encountered have once again distracted, healed, soothed, or numbed my pain or confusion.
I was thinking this morning about the story in the Old Testament when the thirsty children of Israel, while crossing the wilderness, encountered the bitter waters of Marah. Predictably they complained and wondered how in the world God would provide for them this time. But when Moses obeyed God’s command to cut down a tree into the waters, the waters miraculously turned sweet and drinkable.
It occurred to me that sometimes Life is my Marah, bitter, undrinkable. But I’m thankful that God has commanded so many trees—-so many friends—-to fall into my life and make it sweet.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Garage Talk

Carl felt the cold air before he saw his brother-in-law Jarrett walk into the garage and shut the door with his foot. Jarrett leaned up against the wall, and removed his cap, wiping at his hair in the one fluid movement of a man who had been wearing a cap as long as he could consciously use his appendages and maybe a little before that.
Carl turned to look over his shoulder and nodded a silent greeting, the way men do when they don’t want to waste extra words.
Finally, Jarrett found the confidence to confess, “She’s throwin’ things, man.”
“What?” The comment was enough to make Carl stand straight, grabbing for the faded pink rag on the hood of the Chevy he was working on.
“She’s in the house, throwin’ things at me. I asked her what was wrong and she said she feels like beatin’ me up.”
Carl grinned and turned back to his work. “You just caught her at a bad time. Her grumpy hormones have her happy hormones in a headlock. By the time you get home, she’ll be sobbin’ ready to make up.”
Jarrett looked doubtful at his brother-in-law. “I don’t know.” He turned his elbow to inspect the small gash capped with a bubble of burgundy coagulated blood. “She nailed me pretty good.”
In another surge of interest, Carl dropped his wrench. “Woo boy. Let me see.” He hurried over to look at the wound Jarrett was holding as if he’d been mauled by a lion. “She sure did. What’d she get you with?”
“Tweezers. That’s what she was doing when she got mad—-pullin’ her eyebrows and--I dunno, other stuff. Said she was tired of fightin’ with her mustache, or somethin’. Then all I said was ‘yeah there was a long one on the side of your cheek.’ And she let me have it. She growled too. Scared the snot out of me.”
Carl pressed his lips together to keep a laugh from exploding, but ended up doubled over guffawing instead. When he’d finally composed himself, he swiped at the blood on Jarrett's arm with his oily rag, smearing it a little bit.“You’ll live, man. Live and learn. You're lucky. Some men go through their marriage without so much as a single battle scar—-wear that one proudly. By the time you get back in there and show her what she did, you'll be able to milk it for all it’s worth. Just make sure the tweezers aren't in her hand.” He grinned, and tousled Jarrett’s hair. “Now come’ere and hold this light.”

Cheesy Adventure


You know what kind of adventures I love the most? The unexpected kind—the kind that spring up on you without solicitation or invitation. It was a filled day and a full day—do you know the difference?
I began with a trip to a flea market which turned into a lunch date with a friend. After taking her home, I came home to write while I waited out the several hours in between my next friend excursion to Cracker Barrel. About an hour into my writing session, I got a call from a friend asking if I wanted to go on an adventure. I thought about saying no-—after all, I was on a roll writing. But I’ve promised myself to never say “no” to an adventure. A writer must fill up in order to spill out. So I asked when she’d be by, yanked on some suitable clothes, and we were off.
The adventure turned out to be a trip to a cheese shop, which, by nature, was also a wine shop. When we walked up to the cheese case, I fingered the colorfully rinded cheeses, asking dubiously, “What’s the green stuff in it?” Mold, was the answer, of course. But I’m not a cheese connoisseur so how was I to know?
Standing there reading all the names that I couldn’t pronounce, I was astounded at the selection and the realization that I never even knew that most of those cheeses existed. I’ve never ventured very far from American and cheddar; I don’t even like Swiss. In fact, Feta has been the most exotic that I’ve tried. According to cheese.com, there are 670 kinds of recorded cheese in the world. Which makes sense, because I suppose every culture in the world has a cheese. (What must a cheeseless culture be like?) My cheesy ignorance made me feel very tiny, made the world feel very big. But it didn’t overwhelm or discourage me; it made me want to discover more of the world and its cheese.
My friend and I dined on brie and pate on freshly baked French bread; we ate spiced olives, deviled eggs, and little chocolate glazed crescent desserts in the back seat of her car. The impromptu picnic and my newfound knowledge left me feeling spoiled, enriched, and—dare I say it?—broadened.

Complications

Since I was a little girl, I’ve been fascinated by the word complications. It’s such a dramatically vague word. Sitting on the cold metal folding chairs in prayer rooms, swinging my short legs, I listened to the older ladies say dramatically around the peppermint in their mouth, or say softly, looking down at their hands, “Pray for so and so. She’s having complications.” I liked the way that some of them pronounced the ‘p’ so intently, nodding their head as if every other woman in the room but me was privy to inside information.
Complications. It was a delicious word, full of intrigue for a little girl who wanted to know every detail—-no matter how it might have horrified me or made me blush. “Don’t stop there,” I wanted to blurt out. “Tell me more. What kind of complications?”
I guess I still do have a fascination with words—I collect them: feckless, callow, daiquiri, purl, paraffin, clandestine, voluptuous, antebellum, serendipity, bangle, almandine, barracuda—oh, the list could go on and on. I remember the first time I saw or heard most of them and snatched them up to be added to my list and to practice saying them just because I liked the way they sounded.
But I don’t collect words the way that some people collect dollar store trinkets to sit on shelves and gather dust; I collect them to use them, to explore them and their stories.
I don’t know—maybe I’m just weird. I guess it’s just one of my–complications.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Star Spangled Moment


(Written in fall 2007)

Old Glory acknowledged the attention of the crowded stadium by gracefully unfurling her colors in the summer breeze, eager to accept the coming anthem.
Turning from the flag just enough to scan the baseball field, I spotted the singer across the stadium, preparing to lead us in the “Star Spangled Banner.” My usual apprehension at the quality of hometown divas vanished when rather than shaking out the first note, she belted out the lyrics more confidently than any other amateur anthem singer I’d ever heard—and on tune to boot.
“O say, can you see, by the dawn’s early light, what so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming?”
Though the strength of the woman’s voice bolstered hope, my cynical side braced for the high note that most singers screech on. I clinched my eyes shut, cringing in advance.
“And the rockets’ red glare—”
My dread proved unfounded when she nailed those notes and then offered a dramatic pause in which I reveled, indulging in pride and relief.
But the pause stretched into a stop, and the rest of the lyrics didn’t ring through the speakers.
“I’m sorry.” The woman laughed into the microphone. “Can I start over?”
I whirled around to gape at her, shocked at the unprecedented request.
But unflappable, she cleared her throat and started “O saying” from the very beginning.
Settling once again into the patriotic ambiance, I turned back to the flag, my hand still resting reverently on my chest. As she neared the rocket line again, I took a deep breath and held it “through the perilous fight,” and the “twilight’s last gleaming,” all the way up to—
“And the rockets’ red glare—”
Once again the rocket line hovered in the heat-laden summer air.
With the eyes of the stadium on her, the woman shook her head. “I’m sorry. I can’t finish
it.” This time, she handed over the microphone and walked off the field, leaving us to wonder
what kind of person forgets the words to “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
Hesitantly, we lowered our hands, leaving the song half sung. The announcer yelled,
“Play ball,” the crowd cheered and the game continued as if one of the most awkward moments in the history of sporting events hadn’t just happened.
As I left the stadium that night, the incomplete anthem haunted me, making me wonder at our apathetic reaction.
The National Anthem enters our repertoire in kindergarten. Like good little patriots, we memorize the song almost as carefully as we memorize the alphabet. But even though most of us in the stadium knew the lyrics, none of us lifted our voices to help the woman remember them; instead, we allowed her to leave the sacred song unfinished.
Though, we inwardly condemned the woman’s anthem amnesia, every day we forget the blessing of living in the greatest nation. We sit around discussing the flaws and shortcomings of America, yet few people stand up to remind us of our privileged citizenship.
We’ve allowed historians to rewrite our heritage, omitting (refuse, reject) our nation’s Christian foundations. We elect politicians who perpetuate a government that forgets the necessity of our Constitution—yet so few of us speak up to remind them of these vital underpinnings of our nation’s success and survival.
With these and other significant matters being forgotten without our attempting to bring them back to the forefront of the nation’s thoughts, it’s no wonder that we carried on a ballgame and exited the stadium without taking the initiative to complete our National Anthem.
Given the chance to revisit the crowded stadium that night, as the woman walked off the field, I like to think that mine would be the voice to lead the rest of the stadium in letting the final lines burst in the air to give proof through the night that our nation still cares to remember things that are truly important—and to remind those who have forgotten.

Just Listen: ears optional

“Can I talk to you?” It’s a question I hear regularly, whether formulated into words, or suggested through hurting eyes and drooped shoulders. It’s an easy enough question to answer for most people: “Sure you can talk to me. Fire away, I can still text on my phone, flip through my mail, and make a mental grocery list while you spill your two month’s worth of pent-up problems in my ear.”
Somewhere in the course of a day someone will usually ask, “Do you have a minute?” If your life is anything like mine, your honest answer would probably be a blatant ‘no’ followed by a rundown of your to-do-list. No, I don’t have a minute—which usually turns out to be more like fifteen or thirty—to donate to a bleeding heart or happy soul who wants someone to listen.
Finally, after the subtle hinting and gentle inquiries don’t persuade
me to pause, those longing for a listener express their desire for an opened ear in the simple command, “Just listen to me!”
After the spiel above I know you’re questioning my credentials for offering advice about effective listening. Well, I feel as if I’ve lived my life with a sign posted across my forehead flashing the words “I’ll listen – present all problems, angst or heartaches here.” In general, people will tell me everything; inevitably, I will listen. The truth is, I enjoy listening to people and I do it everyday, but it doesn’t mean that it’s always easy. I’ve done my own share of mental multi-tasking and lackadaisical listening because it’s so easy to hear someone and so hard to listen. The reason that listening is more difficult than hearing is that listening is an act of giving, a ministry that takes time to learn and refine. It is a sacrifice of time, self, and sometimes sanity, but it is also one of the most accessible tools God has given us in order to be burden bearers. There is a vast difference between people who provide their bodily presence in a conversation and others who offer a heart poised to listen. Listening has an entirely different meaning from hearing because listening has absolutely nothing to do with the ears.

Listen with Your Lips
Though the lips and ears are only about three inches apart from one another, they are the most paradoxical members of the entire body. So how do you listen with your lips? When people are talking they are usually longing for your undivided attention rather than your unsolicited advice. A word fitly spoken has its place, but that’s another ministry— one that God did not call me to or equip me for so I won’t write about it here. (The truth is that my most eloquent moments make Porky Pig sound like a silver tongued orator.) I’ve found that closed lips are the best to listen with; one lip pressed tightly against the other allows you to keep your ears wide opened. God gave us two ears and one set of lips for a reason. You think He was trying to tell us something?
Listen with Your Eyes
The greatest indicator of your listening competence isn’t your open ears, but your attentive eyes. When a girlfriend is pouring out her heart, it probably isn’t the best time to be scrutinizing the cute outfit on the woman sitting close by or critiquing the really bad dye job on the woman
walking by. When your eyes wander to anything other than the person
talking, you send the message that you aren’t interested in what she is
saying. Now, don’t be extreme— this isn’t a staring contest. If the person seems to feel uncomfortable with you looking at her, maybe shift your focus down to her arms or the table or floor, but always let her know you’re with her, understanding what she is saying. If God has brought someone along whom we may listen to, we should at least put out the welcome sign by keeping our eyes as tuned in to her message as our ears ought to be.
Listen with Your Memory
I’ve heard it all, let me tell you. But when friends—and yes, complete strangers-- feel compelled to share with me about their rained out paper maché party, their goldfish’s battle with pneumonia, or their nose hair infection, I always try to remember to ask about their problem or issue the next time I see them. It’s the follow-up questions that tell people, ‘I listened; I’ve been thinking about what you told me.’ A great way to remember a friend’s burdens is to constantly pray for her. The blessing comes for you when you ask about their problem the next time you see them and they give a positive report— the goldfish is better, the party’s re-planned, and their nose hairs are healing nicely. All you have to do is smile and wait until their next problems arise.
Listening with Your Heart
Up to now these have been suggestions for an outward display of attention that say more than ‘I’ll listen,’ they say, ‘I care.’ Though those things are important, imperative, we can only become effective listeners by placing others deep enough in our hearts until we care more for their needs than our own.
Have you ever watched a person’s mouth move for five minutes before you zone back in to realize that their words took a quick one-way trip through your ear canal and you start to pray that they don’t ask you for a response? There will always be eleventy billion issues or ideas vying for attention in our minds; this is when we need to close out the things going on around us, shut off your own thoughts, push ourselves aside and just listen with our hearts.
Listen with Your Soul
Caring for others and taking time to listen is much easier when we remember that God remains ever waiting to listen to us. He cares even when we decide not to share our burdens with Him.
Joseph Scriven must have known God to be a good listener when he penned the words
What a friend we have in Jesus.
All our sins and grieves to bear.
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer.
Oh, what peace we often forfeit;
Oh what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer.
At this point you might be wondering, “If God is such a good
listener, why don’t we just point the problem plagued person to Him?
After all, He has more time to listen than we do and certainly has more
resources to help.”
When we search in our souls for ways to show others the care that God reveals, we’ll find that mimicking Him by listening to our prayers and problems.
Listening with our souls means listening with a purpose, bearing
burdens, and pointing people to that ‘what-a-Friend’, the only One who
can truly solve their problems and will always be there to listen.
Look around; there are chances to practice your listening ministry everywhere. But the next time someone wants you to hear them out, try not using your ears and just listen.

Who I Am

I am a writer. I might just as well tell you this as to tell you my name.
I am a writer not because of what I do, but because of who I am, an ink stained wretch who can’t put the pen down, can’t satiate that ingrained desire to crane my ear to an interesting conversation, and can’t drink in enough details in the world surrounding me every day.
I won’t be noble and claim to be a writing warrior for Christ. I don’t have zealous desires to write gospel tracts or mission letters. I just want to write.
As the Olympic runner, Eric Liddell said about running, I feel God’s pleasure in me when I write. With a pen in my hand, I feel most effective; without one, I feel unarmed, unprepared to face a world that is about to hurl vivid details and stories my way.
But writing is like taking my heart on parade. As a rather closed person who opens only to prying and force, I balk at the idea of revealing the closed side of my heart; the side where warm and friendly meets cold and calloused; where normal and sensible encounters quirky and unconventional. In essence, writing reveals to others who I truly am.
Maybe that’s why I kept my writing a secret for so long.
When I was seven, I wrote my first short story and poem. Those, I shared with my family who did no less than rave over them. Then, not so long after, I became a secret operative. My stories and poems were written in a Lisa Frank notebook and stuffed under the drawer under my bed. Whenever I left the house and returned, my heart would race until I ensured that my mom hadn’t discovered the stash.
Finally, in 2000, my cover was blown when my dad found the page of a short story I had carelessly left in my church’s copy machine. He called me at home and asked eagerly if there were anymore pages of the story. I bawled, feeling that I had betrayed myself.
I’ve never wandered deep enough into my subconscious to understand exactly why I refused to share my work back then. But it was probably for the same reason I still hesitate to reveal my thoughts, my writing to people.
Hiding my writing has always meant hiding my self for fear of insufficiency.
I nearly changed my major in my sophomore year of college, fearful of failure in Creative Writing and Advanced Grammar.
Each year, I held my breath as I flipped through the senior Commercial Writing portfolios. Thoroughly depressed, I trudged back to my room, scared that I would never be able to write as brilliantly as those who wrote before me.
I even went through a time when I refused to read books because I was worried
that a sign might pop off of a really good page that confirmed the fear that I wasn’t a writer.
But my deepest apprehension was that God had given me the desire to write without supplying me with the ability to be a writer.
The more I write, however, the more I realize that the Master Author has equipped me to be a writer by making me who I am.
I view the world in a way others do not or can not see it. My view sees significance in the irrelevant. From corn silk, to grits, inevitably, my mind ties those simple images to the way I think and feel. The corn silk reminds me of the need to strip myself of immaturity. The grits becomes, in my mind, a symbol of the people I want to avoid (see "The Way 'Grits' Got to Be").
I don’t claim my vision as something that I have achieved, for I know it is a gift that God has bestowed upon me; a gift that is meant to be shared with others who might need that view to realize that their struggle is common unto man.
I cherish the moment when a friend looks up from my paper, in surprise, and confesses that my description explained exactly what she has felt but could not put into words.
I have succeeded as a senior Commercial Writing major, but I certainly haven’t arrived through my own ability. God has proven to be the greatest idea file I could ask for. He daily sends people, situations, and images into my life that He wants me to write about.
My writing isn’t something that I can hide anymore, no matter how scared I am to reveal it. For in truth, the success of my writing doesn’t come through fearing what I can’t do but by using what God has already given me.
Really, there’s only one simple reason why I write. I write because it is what God made me to do; it’s who I am.
I am a writer.