To speak a word into space -- into blank page or open airwave -- is as terrible as it is awesome.
It's made me wonder if God didn't feel butterflies before he spoke a Word into the void. If the adrenaline and vulnerability of that pregnant moment didn't give him pause. If he didn't close his eyes and breath deep once before speaking the world into being.
It was December the last time I hit publish on something original for this blog. Everything since then was recycled -- thoughts from old papers or my thesis. Half-hacked drafts sit back in the files here and there, but nothing found its way outside a Google server.
The longer the space the more terrible that moment of speech becomes. But troublesome as a void may be to the 'pen,' it's harder still to speak into a world chock full of contentious words. Of course, some say it wasn't a void God spoke into at all. It was Chaos. And through the Word, Chaos was brought to order.
I respect him all the more for it.
But what of the times when speech must be made in places sodden with pain, when every word feels hollow and far too weak to heal? Most treacherous of all, where can we find courage to speak when the roar about us finds agreement in lies or evil? How do we tear free from silence to speak truth to power?
Still, I can remember when my Lord did all these things. And so, for all the possible stumbling blocks and pitfalls, we must speak.
The Christian tells a different story. Like the one we follow, we're those who speak and act to bring an alternate sort of sense to things.
For me, that vocation has grown into a craving to write. Now that all the required lines of school are behind me, the desire to put words together on my own terms lives on. The time feels ripe to turn my itch into a habit -- a discipline. I think I still need to learn how to write, and it's as good a moment as any for that lesson to begin.
That will take a couple forms which will become more clear over time. But, for the present, a few things are plain.
First, I plan to structure writing into every week. That won't necessarily mean that a post gets made every week, but I will consistently work on writing.
The second piece is a change in format. This site will be replaced by a slicker platform. I've secured www.forshalom.com and will be working to make it live over the next month.
Finally, nothing much is accomplished or stuck to without a good BHAG (a Big Hairy Audacious Goal). Mine is to have a book published by the time I'm 30.
The proposals start today.
We'll see where it all goes. For now, I just feel good breaking the silence.