Writing Life: The Truest Story
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Today is Easter, the day of the resurrection, the greatest of all days in the year. Today is the day we received life, handed freely from a God who loved us through his Son. We give nothing and receive everything, hearts open. This is Easter Sunday.
As a bit of intro, I have not been shy about writing against “preachy” stories. I’ve written many times about living stories, that draw the reader in with a fantastic story rather than with a basic truth or moral. In fact, in 24 Writing Life posts I found five distinct times I’ve written on this: Words that Grow, Truth-Whisperers, Living Stories, The Greatest Story of All, and Great Books Are Relevant. It’s a topic that’s important to me. As a writer, I want my stories to draw a reader in. Dry morals, more often than not, drive a reader away and leave him with no truth at all, even though it may be plainly stated and actually true! But I want to be careful that my enthusiasm for this subject doesn’t overshadow a similar subject: we are called to write God’s story in our own stories. Isn’t that a contradiction?
I believe that a writer must write about what they believe. But rather than taking the form of dry religious novels or “Christian” literature, this should be present in every single word we write. If we are to change lives, our own lives must have been changed — and if your life has been changed, it will be present in your writing, even unconsciously. Writing is primarily a worldview exercise — you can’t write without your worldview coming through.
So what does seep through in your stories? One way or another, it’s your deepest-held beliefs. My hope is a writer is that when I’m writing, heck, if I’m sleep-talking, I’m talking about the story of Easter. I don’t ever want to be able to get over it or take it for granted. Like a prism, I hope to reflect the rainbow of God’s story in my writing: not in a simple, moralistic way, but like a thousand shooting colors and lights that dance in the margins and point towards the truth faithfully.
My hope with everything I write is that a reader might put the book down and say, “Man, I wish the real world could be that way.” Well, I have great news for you! The world is that way. There is a happy ending, because there is a Creator who stands over and above this entire world. There will be an end to the tears and the pain, and he has made a way for everyone who believes to know him — the God who created us all. This is what Jesus accomplished at Calvary, and when he rose three days later, the stone rolled away with reverberations that still echo even until today.
This is the story we are writing about.