I just finished a fascinating book, L.M. Montgomery and Canadian Culture. It is a collection of essays which evaluate the writings of Montgomery with regard to how culture shaped her writing, and how her writing shaped culture.
Montgomery, an orphan herself, wrote about others like her. She wrote from the depths of her heart. In her last novel, Jane of Lantern Hill, you can read in between the lines and see a woman who, even five years before her death, was still resolving the reality of a very hard life. She was raised by harsh grandparents while her father lived across the country with a new wife. She was not a woman easily assimilated into the culture of rural P.E.I.; being an author was not really considered respectable. She endured a very hard marriage and a husband with serious mental illness, followed up by conflict with her own children. She was, actually, the antithesis of her heroines. In her last novel, Jane Stuart is finally reunited with her beloved father and mother, far away from the overbearing grandmother, a resolution Montgomery could only have dreamed of for herself. The longing of a little girl who lost both mother and father is echoed in every book where the heroine is an orphan or a child living in isolation.
As I look back at stories I wrote as a child, I can see that I wrote from my heart, too. Every heroine, every conflict, every ending, reflected what was in my heart. Do I write from the depths of my heart anymore? I hope I do, but somtimes, I think the advent of social media and the possibility of others reading has led me to compromise that and instead, write to feed the fascination of the day. I don't think I like that.
Recently, I asked myself what I thought was the greatest concern in my heart. I concluded that it was the need for Christians to be in God's word. That is what I should be writing about. I should be using this space to share what I'm learning about God's word. It will mean, though, that readership will go own from its already paltry numbers. But as a friend recently encouraged me, using those posts as an offering to God should be my intent, anyway.
When I do write posts about bible study, I can assure you, they are the least read of anything I ever write. Perhaps they're just garbage and no one has been kind enough to tell me. However, if I was to write a post about how I suddenly decided that homeschooling was evil and I wanted to repent of my ways, you better believe someone would read it. Any "tell all" post garners attention. We do love the drama of others, and it is a particular occurrence that homeschool haters can sniff out a "I've repented from homeschooling" post in a minute.
More and more I see my need to be in God's Word and to encourage other Christians to do the same. I feel a restless urgency about it. Like Montgomery, I hope anything I write, whether it's read by one person or twenty, I want what's deepest held in my heart to be evident. Ultimately, if it's God's Word I'm concentrating on, it will be the best thing for me.