When I first started blogging, I had more doubts than the English books I’d read from cover to cover. It’s not because I didn’t enjoy reading but because I read Chinese books growing up, not English ones. You see, I’m from China after all.
I only started reading English books at university, where I studied English and Journalism. After graduation, I joined an international ministry where English was required for my job. I worked a lot as an interpreter, and my language ability was improving every day. That was where I finished reading my first English book. I also started to pray and journal in English.
About two years ago, being pregnant with the second child, I sought God diligently about what I was to do with my life. After much prayer and seeking, I felt God confirmed with me over and over again, “You are a writer.” Though I loved writing from a young age and kept journaling throughout the years, I never considered myself a writer. Besides, I always had this big question mark in mind, writing in English or Chinese?
Living in the French-speaking part of Switzerland, I’d learned French along the way but could only speak the basics. Maybe because I’d been growing and working in an English speaking environment for a decade, plus no one speaks mandarin on the streets, English felt like the most natural language for me. So I finally decided to write on my blog in English regularly.
The more I write and publish, the more confident I feel about being a writer, the better my writing becomes as it is with every other writer. Compared to thousands of accomplished authors out there, the work I’ve built may seem to be nothing. But compared to where I was before I had a blog, it was simply a miracle. I’d never thought that strangers would follow my blog, nor my articles would be featured by other authors I deeply admire.
I was reading the book Freely and Lightly by Emily Lex yesterday. She mentioned how she was touched by the Christmas carol Little Drummer Boy. Since this poor boy had nothing to bring to the newborn King, he started to play his drum for him— the only thing he had and the only thing he could do, to the best of his ability. “Then, he smiled at me, me and my drum.” The song ends.
I cried in deep resonation when I read this part. Because just the past Christmas, I listened to this song on repeat. I felt like him, didn’t have much but the little gift of language and writing that I wasn’t even sure about. I acted on the identity God called me, a writer, and started to live like one by blogging weekly. I brought the gift to God, and He used it to bless someone today or last week, or last month. Maybe that someone was you.
My friend, He indeed gives every one of us good gifts. The gifts aren’t just writing or painting, or any other things you love doing. Mothering, homemaking, marriage, and friendships— every aspect of our life is a gift from God, a blank canvas for us to create, put on strokes and colours of our choice.
That little drummer boy didn’t have to play the drum for the King. He could have belittled his drumming skills and given in to the sense of inadequacy. Perhaps it was what others had said to him: “Oh, you are not good enough. You didn’t go to school for it. You don’t have the right skills.”
How to see and use our gifts is entirely our choice. Whatever discouraging things you have heard when you position to bring your gifts to the King, my friend, let those words slip off you. What you have is what’s appreciated and needed because your gifts are from God to work for His glory. He has named you and called you.
You are a writer, a poet, a painter, a designer, an engineer, a homemaker, a mother, a wife, a friend, an artist. Live like one.
PS, in case you didn’t know, I’m giving out two of my recently printable floral watercolour prints for free. All you need to do is to sign up here to receive them. 🙂 Until next week!