Some of my notes and thoughts from attending Wild at Heart Boot Camp – August 17
This weekend has been filled with inspirational stories of men. Warriors, athletes, leaders, innovators. As I took in the stories of these great and inspirational men, I wondered to myself where and how I fit in that mix, if I do at all.
In 2004 I took up writing as a hobby. Actually, I took it up because it was a more healthful alternative to the drinking I was doing to deal with the pain in my life at the time. My marriage in shambles and my father recently deceased, it was very easy to find comfort at the bottom of a bottle or eight of beer. So writing became my outlet, and I’ve been fortunate to see it turn into something very positive and constructive in my life. I’ve taken on several writing projects since then. I self-published two short novels, had my writing featured in both my local newspaper and a compilation book, and I have nearly 600 blog posts following my timid and awkwardly horrible first post. Yet through it all, I’ve found myself afraid to take the next step forward with my writing.
This afternoon’s session was about risk-taking. We discussed the difference between risk for no reason and risk for good. In summary, it was the difference between immature thrill seeking and laying it on the line for the greater good. I really don’t know where I fall on that spectrum except to say that as I grow older, my propensity to play it safe increases.
As to where I fall in the mix of inspirational and heroic men, I found the answer not in the chaos of a war field or in the roar of a capacity-filled stadium. I found it not in the applause of an auditorium nor in the quorum of a corporate board room. Rather, I found my answer in the serenity of sitting on a porch, pen in hand, as I overlooked the majesty of the mountains. As nature kissed my ears with the melodic rustling of aspen tree leaves, I came to the realization some of the most important, heroic, inspirational, and valiant people in the history of the world were writers. Four in particular came to mind: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
I am not saying I fancy myself the author of the next Gospel. Rather, as I rediscovered and reaffirmed yesterday, I am a writer. I need to renounce my fears and timidity. I need to step out of my comfort zone. I need to take a risk.
I need to put myself out there as a writer, sharing my stories and experiences, because I believe that is where God is directing me to go.