by Hannah Conway
I never equated writing stories with mission work.
I had big plans for my life. Writing was for fun-just stories and nothing more. I scripted a multitude of tales throughout my childhood surrounding these huge life plans. People seemed to rather enjoy hearing and reading my creations. Yes-sir-ee. Feeding babies in Africa. Educating and reading to children in South America. Building shelters for families in third-world countries. Those were my plans. That’s how I would serve God.
I took four years of Spanish in high school, and a year of it in college, because, well, African languages weren’t offered in Kentucky schools. I studied other cultures, read memoirs and biographies of amazing Missionaries like Lottie Moon, Elisabeth Elliot, Mary Slessor, and Mother Teresa. Yes, big plans, and massive shoes to fill, but it was all for God. He’d be so proud of me when I finally became a real, live Missionary.
It took quite a while, and several bumps and bruises in my life, to see that I already was one. And so are you.
My dreams of becoming an official, some sort of certificate holding missionary were put on hold when God put a handsome soldier in my life. The uniform still gets me (sigh and swoon). We met, married, and Army-life during wartime happened.
War. Deployments. Death. Loss. Worry. Fear. Life became a battlefield, and it was in the midst of troubled marriages, and hurting hearts that I realized the battlefield was my mission field. God didn’t need me in South America or Africa.
I was exactly where I was supposed to be.
I picked up my pen and paper, and began to write, knowing for the first time my words had purpose-a mission. Any story I told would no longer be just a story, and neither is yours. God never wastes a hurt or an opportunity to help hurting people, and neither should we. As Authors, our words go out into the world and impact the hearts and minds of our readers. We are missionaries in every sense of the word, and because of that, I want to encourage you as I was encouraged to be blatantly Christian in your writing. Not that you have to preach a sermon, but that your words, creation, storyline, etc. reflect the One who gave you the ability to write.
We don’t simply write a story. We have the opportunity, and the privilege to tell others about the goodness of God in our stories. Amazing, right? I didn’t have to travel to South America to come to that conclusion.
I pray this article resonates with you dear reader, and helped you realize you’re not only a talented writer, but a missionary as well.
Hannah Conway is the author of The Wounded Warrior’s Wife and Wedding a Warrior from Olivia Kimbrell Press. She is an Army wife of more than a decade, mother of two, writer and speaker. A Kentucky native, Hannah lives near Fort Campbell where she and her family reside. She holds a BA in History from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and is active in ministry, Mothers of Preschoolers (MOPS), as well as the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), and My Book Therapy (MBT). You can find Hannah on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.