The Creative Writing Process for a Christian
A few years ago a paper came across my desk. It was a paper written by a Pastor who lives and serves a congregation about 3,000 miles from where I live. But the world has become relatively flat and distance no longer seems to matter. Somehow, the Holy Spirit saw to it that this particular paper be made known to me. It was a paper about “Heaven.”
The paper was lengthy, so at first I just skimmed through it. But the Spirit had other plans for this paper and for me as well. The message contained in the paper started to affect me, to inspire me and to move me. So I started to read it again, but in more depth. It felt like God was talking to me through this Pastor’s writing.
I did not set out to make notes on the paper but I first found myself highlighting the sentences that struck a major chord with me. Something was happening inside me. The paper was stirring my heart to respond. This is called worship because I was sensing God through it and I knew that I needed to glorify Him through this Pastor’s diligent work.
“What did the paper mean to me? How could I encapsulate what I was feeling onto a blank sheet of paper? How could I use this experience to tell others about my Savior and eternity in heaven with Him?” These are the thoughts that started to flow through me. So I started to write. First in sentence form but eventually a metered form took over. The lines were just falling into place like a train of carefully placed dominoes. It took me hours to read through the paper, to cogitate on it, to pray over it, and to reflect on it’s meaning but in actuality, the poem came to me quickly as most truly inspired poems do.
My favorite line in the poem? – of course it’s the one about “Isaiah” and if you are familiar with Isaiah 6 you will know why.
Here is the poem that I titled “Heaven, Really”
Shrouded in mystery
Anchored in history
Oh it’s heaven
A prepared place
For prepared people
The Son’s grace
The Father’s dwelling place.
The Spirit reveals
Here’s the deal:
Streets of gold
Before you enfold
it’s blessedness I am told
The Tree of Life is actually growing
The River of Life is actually flowing
Why all this unknowing?
Angels sing “holy, holy, holy is He”
A cloud of witnesses surround me
Unending joy and eternal pleasure will be.
No need for the sun.
Isaiah is no longer undone.
How old will we appear?
What will we look like?
And whom shall we fear?
Will we recognize one another?
Will we remember our mother,
a sister; a brother?
What will we do?
I’m thinking …
… No more sitting in a pew.
In my book, I tried to introduce each of my poems with similar stories. Why I wrote the piece, what was inspiring me at the time, what was I doing as I wrote the poem, etc. My hope is that the Holy Spirit will use my poems and prayers to affect you as this Pastor’s District paper moved me.