“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” –Benjamin Franklin.
For as long as I can remember, I have had a deep love for words. I connect with them completely- more than my own self, at times. I have been told stories about how at six years old I used to roam about the backyard, taking laps around the concrete driveway, telling stories into the air, arms waving wildly with emotion! My mother saw my blooming tendencies and nurtured them, because she has the same love for words herself. She has always made me tell her Bible stories every night, from the point of view of the characters before we went to sleep- though the story of the Resurrection didn’t end up involving an elaborate Easter egg hunt for Mary and the disciples as I dreamed up as a 4-year-old!
As you can imagine, words and I have had a long, complicated history together filled with all the passion of my heart. You see, from my early childhood to now, I have never quite fit in with the popular crowd. I enjoy mature, uplifting conversation, and I feel sick when people talk about people behind their backs, make fun of them, and judge or be mean to them. I guess you could say I can be rather out of the ordinary. But I can feel the rejection for how I am, like no one gets me. However, words were always there for me. Their stories, riddles, and mysteries were the best of companions to a lonely little girl with a reserved disposition. Words pursued my attention, pulled at my heart, and were there to help me feel my way around my every mood. For a long time, though, our relationship was give and take, with words being the giver and I being the taker. I could control my words, every move they made I had given the order. I always pushed them around this way and that, making them do whatever I wanted. As I got older, nonetheless, I couldn’t use my words to shelter me from social situations. I felt like my words had abandoned me- just when I needed them most. I wanted to be brave, but no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t bring myself to make conversation with anyone but close family members. I became miserably self-conscious, pushing away totally from my words. They had failed me when I needed them most, now I didn’t want them at all. What I didn’t realize was in the process, my spirit was starting to deteriorate. I was born to live in the love of language.
What was wrong? I had been so certain that words were all I had needed. But they just weren’t enough anymore. I searched other outlets, ignoring what I was made for. Hiding from it to see if I could fit in with the crowd. After I found this to be a vain pursuit. That was when joy was offered to me by Jesus. I was already saved of course, but this was not the Jesus I thought I knew. The Savior suddenly became such a real person to me, not at all like some hollowed (yes, I meant hollowed not hallowed) religious figure. He is more to me than my words could ever begin to describe, which made me fall desperately in love with Him. Jesus showed me that he had not given me my words to fill the place in my heart reserved for Him, but a gift to grace people around me with. Now I could show them the complete acceptance that is given to us through Christ, the only way to God the Father. Words have a different place in my heart now, because they are restricted from replacing their creator. Since my decision to take in the joy offered to me, I have become more social, and also more experienced in my talent because of my prayers for wisdom. I have made big steps. I write constantly, and I am developing an appreciation for constructive criticism. All this has been achieved by God pushing me out of my comfort zone so that He might work in me.
I see this blog as an opportunity to hone my craft and to help people, especially those my age and younger, I know how tough it is out there. Also, I hope to help my sister, Isabella, and other little kids like her. Honestly, I don’t know how He will use me, or how a twelve year old girl’s words could contribute to broken, hurting people, but I do know that God’s words never fail no matter what. And that “The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.” –Proverbs 18:21. This verse can go both ways. Either I use my words to tear people down, and hurt them deeply as I have experienced- the power of death. Or, I can use words my words to build others up, brighten their day or a tough situation, sharing with them the joy that is mine (John 3:29)- the power of life. Thank-you for reading my opening post! I’d love it if you’d keep reading! If you would like to talk to me about this post, or ask for a new blog post topic to get a conversation going, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can follow me on Twitter by searching for @RutanKayleigh, Kayleigh-ann Rutan on Pinterest, and Facebook….
Again, well said, Mr. Franklin. Well said.