I pounded out the angry words on my keyboard, my fingers playing the letters the way a maestro's tap dances along the ivories of a piano. I was consumed by the scenes playing out in my head, my hands barely keeping up with the flow of my thoughts.
I was exhilarated. The story was good.
I was also drowning in the bitterness of my childhood, the one the story was based upon. I felt the former rage rising up again, the old animosities and turmoil rearing their ugly heads.
What are you doing?
Uh-oh. A tingle of shame rippled through me.
“I’m writing right now, God,” I said, concentrating on the screen, furiously adding words to the story. “I can’t really stop to have this conversation.”
What are you writing about?
I quit typing and breathed out a sigh of exasperation. “You already know. If I stop to explain it, I’ll lose my train of thought.”
Throw it by me anyway.
“It’s about this girl and her mother, and how her mother was a ….”
You mean it’s about you and your mother.
“Well, yes…it’s based loosely on my childhood.” I felt sweat beading on my forehead. Did I just hear God snort?
It’s a play-by-play account of your childhood. I thought we’d been through this.
“I’ve forgiven her…”
That’s what you said…
“It’s a story…”
It’s an autobiography.
“I’m a writer. I’m supposed to write what I know.”
You’ve known forgiveness and mercy. You’ve known hope in hopelessness.
I groaned. “But I could win the competition with this story!”
Are you trying to win a competition or a crown? Why do you want to enslave yourself to bitterness and anger all over again? Isn’t the message I’ve given you to share enough?
“Of course it’s enough! It’s just this story fits so well with the topic…”
You can’t write it, beloved. I can’t allow you to be chained to the past, not if you want a future. You do still want a future, don’t you?
I sat back in resignation. “You know I do.”
Then delete the file.
My hand hesitated in mid-air. For one brief second I reconsidered. Then I wiped the story from the screen.
Empty the recycle bin. Let’s not tempt ourselves, hmmm?
“You know me too well,” I grumbled, obeying. “Now what do I do for a story? I don’t care if it wins or not, I’d just like to submit one. Could you help me out with that?”
I just did.
I considered for a moment, then brightened. “You mean…this conversation?” I thought I heard God smile.
“I love you, God.”
I love you too, beloved. Write well. There will be more, I promise you.
“For I know what plans I have in mind for you,’ says Adonai, ‘plans for well-being, not for bad things; so that you can have hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
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