Blog writing is like food prep.
Some of my blogs are like guacamole. For my guacamole, I mash up an avocado, stir in some cream cheese or sour cream, sprinkle in a few spices, stir it together, and serve it up with my favorite tortilla chips. Sometimes blog writing flows that easily. I gather a couple of experiences from the storehouse of my memory, add in a nugget of take-away application, sprinkle in a Bible verse, quote, or humorous twist, stir it together with words that thrust themselves at me and serve it up to you, my readers. I pat myself on the back. Good job, Karen. In fact, I am tempted to feel downright smug that writing flowed as easily water coursing through a water spigot.
Other days, blog writing takes more work. It becomes like bread baking or even like making puff pastry. I’ve never made puff pastry but I’ve made lots of bread. I’ll ponder a life experience for several days, asking myself and the Lord, “What does this mean?” I’ll turn it over and over in my brain, adding in snippets of reflection, contrasting it against other ideas and other experiences, struggling with the injustice of it all or with motivations or truth. Yeah, that’s the hard one – truth. What is truth? Pontius Pilate asked and so do I. Most of all, I’m asking, “Lord what is it that you want me to learn from this?” I dump my ideas on the breadboard of my computer and the mess of words looks worse than freshly mixed bread dough or a tangled skein of yarn. I turn it over and over, trying to knead some sense from it. Finally I must walk away from my creation to let it rise and let me rest. Later I come back and am able to shape it into a creation that will bless both me and you.
It’s crazy. I’ve found that the ideas I struggle over the most often become my best writing. That sounds like my cooking. The dishes that use the most basic ingredients, the most skills, and the longest preparation are the ones that are considered fine cuisine. Quick and easy is known mostly for that – quick and easy. Still good, still satisfying, but something seems to be missing. You can tell a difference.
All that is to say this. I just came back from a writer’s conference. On the surface, it went well. I had some great interactions with editors. I could serve you up a quick and delectable blog of those encounters. But I’m pondering some other interactions, encounters of the God kind where our collision course could only have been orchestrated by God Himself. I’m still pondering, sifting, sorting, asking, “What does this mean? What do you want me to learn?’ In the meantime, laundry and food shopping awaits, I’m checking in with my family, updating Twitter, and gathering needed information for those editor contacts. I’m also starting up our two Bible study groups this week.
So If I’m not as timely on my blog writing, please be patient. I’m thinking and resting. If I get the time, I may even go make some bread so I can ponder and pray as I turn over that lump of dough and shape it and my thoughts into something worthy of sharing with others.