12th September 2015

Last night I attended a concert put together to raise money for children affected by the war in Syria. Many of the artists and performers were younger than me and beautifully talented. Take the [name of band] for instance. Their Mum is wonderful! The voice that came out of that 17 year old’s mouth revealed a tone and a heart’s cry I would expect from someone much older, someone who has grieved.

I chatted to Mum about the lyrics and she shared that the eldest (22) started writing at the age of 11, “just after his dad walked out on him”, often for four hours a day. Well on the way to his 10,000 hours.

Confident and secure, their performance never slipped into being “showy”. The young men were certain in their craft and bold in their execution. I was inspired… and challenged. I could only fathom the hours of solid graft and pushing through that led up to this moment enshrined in song. The guts that led to the glory. [Name of band] know what they want and they have worked for it.

It’s taken me twenty eight years to come close to knowing what I want. I have always held myself back from fully committing to any one thing: teaching, business, even from ministry sometimes because no one thing ever fully embodied what I wanted. To be honest, a part of that holding back was due to the hope that I would get married. Someday. Today I realise that it may never happen. For the first time, this thought doesn’t fill me with despondency. I still desire and I hope, but today I asked myself a question for the first time: if I never got married, what would I devote my life to? To my surprise, my soul replied swiftly and assuredly.

Earlier this week I had prayed to get my “fire” back. This prayer was answered, I feel, by my soul’s fervent cry.

I want to write.

These lines came to me this morning:

“Oh for a thousand tongues to sing about our Great Redeemer’s praise,
Ten thousand songs are not enough to celebrate His beautiful name.
Give me ten thousand years to write a tribute worthy of You, Lord,
It can’t be done but that won’t stop me, I want to fail gloriously!”

Desire to write, to tell stories, the Great Story, His Story- to see the world around me as if for the first time- is burning within me and it won’t relent. For the first time I want something so badly that I’m willing to devote all of my energy, time, great and strength to it even if failure is the best I can expect. This pursuit of words is gloriously futile but without it, my heart sighs and shrinks.

I’m going to write for ten thousand hours and once I’ve smashed that, I’m going to write for ten thousand more. !!!

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