I’ve noticed that sometimes, (not all the time, but sometimes,) as a writer, I sit and ponder what word I should use in a particular sentence.

I agonize over what, specific expression, or phrase will be best.

My reason for such deliberation is that my deep desire as a writer is to say exactly what I intend to say,

Or, as C.S. Lewis put it, “… nothing more or less or other than that very thing.”

But in the midst of what can be an agonizing search for the right word,

As I wrestle with verbs and nouns and meanings,

A haunting reality follows along behind my train of thought,

as if it were some caboose at the end of my story:

“Who am I kidding? No one notices the words I choose;

No one will probably ever even read the words I write;

or listen to the stories I tell.”

There is a strange ‘dance’ that goes on in the heads of serious writers, I think.

Two disparate realities, holding hands, moving around life’s dance floor.

The mind leads the writer into moves and motions and rhythms,

directing the flow of ideas,

the enchantment of story,

the power of reality,



Doubt, however, has also come to every dance.

Holding hands with my mind,

Doubt sways with the ebb and flow of every plot.

Doubt seems to know the moves and motion of my storyline, even before I do.

I cannot free myself from the invisible and yet certain hand of doubt that grasps me,

And whispers in my inner ear as we dance together,

“No one will ever read your words.”

I wonder, sometimes,

About the similarity between struggling to find the right word,

For a story that no one will ever read,

And finding the right ingredients for a life …

Wondering whether anyone will ever notice?

I think most people, on some level, doubt their own significance.

Poet Marilee Zdenek wrote a wonderful piece describing how a lot of people feel, I think,

in her collection, “Splinters in my Pride:”

Long ago, I asked my parents

(using other words)

“Am I of value? Does my life have meaning?”

Then I asked my teachers,

later, directors and editors,

husband and friends—

“Am I of value? Does my life have meaning?”

Then I asked God and God said “Yes.”

And That should have finished it.

But it didn’t”

I’ve noticed that sometimes, (not all the time, but sometimes,) as a follower of Jesus, I sit and ponder what elements or activities I should I include in a particular day.

Deep inside, where no one but God and I can really know,

I agonize over how I’m doing, and are the specific expressions and actions of my life in accordance with His divine plan.

My reason for what I  call ‘life deliberations,’ is that my deep desire is to live my life  exactly the way God would intend.

“… nothing more or less or other than that very way.” Paul, the Apostle writes in II Timothy chapter 2 that “Words are not mere words … If they’re not backed by a godly life, they accumulate as poison in the soul.”

Perhaps that’s where the hitch in my thinking comes along. Just as there is no ‘perfect word, or phrase, or element’ in writing, there is no such thing as living a ‘perfect life,’ unless … unless you’re talking about Jesus, the perfect word who became flesh and lived a perfect life.

Tempted to wonder about your eternal significance? If you find yourself wondering, today “Am I of value? Does my life have meaning?” Feel free to ask God, but I can tell you His answer, already. His answer is ‘Yes.’ And that should settle it.

But … does it?



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