I went for a run the other night. It was a small, out-of-shape, there’s-a-runaway-string-from-my-shorts-scratching-my-leg run, but it was a run nonetheless.
My shoes touched sidewalk like a metronome keeping time to the fireflies’ dance beside me, ushering me to take another step. For some reason tonight was a good night. It could have been the bubblegum snow cone I had just eaten or the chicken quesadilla that was congealing with it in my stomach, but my legs and mind felt fresh; they felt awake. So I began to walk and think and pray.
I prayed about writing for a while. I don’t want to do this stuff simply to get a name. It feels weird to create Facebook pages and websites with my name in the URL, as if my name is a pseudonym for the person I want the world to see.
I kept walking, and I kept praying. And I began to think about the little, random quirks of my personality that come together when I write. They all seem to hang out together and share a Chick-fil-A nugget tray as I type words onto my computer screen; my love of C.S. Lewis asks my passion for analogies to pass the Polynesian sauce. They mingle like old high school friends, combining in some odd, supernatural dance that makes me see a slice of eternity and feel a hint of purpose.
But then a small voice spoke up and told me I would fail. As I ran and prayed and felt excited about my future, the small voice snuck in and awoke a virus in my insides. It told me that my writing would never be enough. It said I was fearful and needed to worry.
Suddenly my legs and mind stopped feeling fresh. My vision flashed to the blankets on my bed enveloping me like a shield to the outside world. Alone with my fears.
I stopped wanting to run, and I briefly forgot the promises of the Lord.
But then the Lord’s promises woke me up with a sweetness of pancakes and fresh coffee. He reminded me that the devil loves to whisper lies to my insides, entrapping me in my weaknesses, trying to convince me of my worthlessness. But God loves to speak over me songs of strength and dignity; redemption and purpose. That he uses the weak to shame the strong, and in my weaknesses he is strong (1 Corinthians 1:27; 2 Corinthians 12:9). He spoke love into me and reminded me that I am His. I was bought with a price (1 Corinthians 6:20). The cross was not too far for God’s love to go, and death was not too strong for God’s love to redeem. I am new because I was made new. I am worthy because I was made worthy. God’s voice broke through with the power of redemption.
Now I think I write as a way to worship; my passions coalesce and have a Chick-fil-A party when I write to proclaim the great creativity of a Creator who shapes imaginations like clay on a potter’s wheel. Perhaps through my writing, I can invite others to join in the party; to put on their dancing shoes, whether well worn or brand new; and enter into the fray of wood-floor, foot stomping jubilance.
As my feet tapped sidewalk like a metronome timing the dance of fireflies beside me, I thought of life as such. As a sort of dance.
Freedom is the dance that redemption asks us to join.