As a companion to our spring book issue, we asked our bloggers about their experiences of writing as a spiritual practice. Here are their blogs.
Sometimes life hurts.
Sometimes life comes at you hard.
We all know what it is like to have life leave its mark.
Whether life gives you one gushing wound or a thousand tiny paper cuts,
some sort of recovery is either desired or required.
When this moment is upon me, I retreat to into words.
I am both a pen-to-paper and a keyboard scraper.
Both allow me to transcribe the dealings of these feelings.
And the words don’t necessarily reflect the stinging rays
causing my aching gaze. Sometimes a phrase is just a phrase.
But I write my own balm.
I schedule my own poetic appointment to follow the droll,
which becomes a literary ointment to console my soul.
I write a soothing salve that covers.
It becomes a sweet solace that hovers
between me and puncture that caused the pain.
Palliative relief through composition I gain.
I try to transcribe life – the very life that can hurt.
But I do this to remember that not all is so curt.
There is beauty and wonder and bellows of thunder beyond my narrow, limited scope.
So I write some down in order to turn back up the vast volume of continuing cadence of hope.
Life can hurt,
but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
And the Spirit continues to move –
so may my winded writing continue to sway.
BRIAN CHRISTOPHER COULTER is pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Aiken, South Carolina. He is a husband, father, pastor, author, blogger and pingpong champion who is pretty good at sidewalk chalk.