Fingerprint of Worship

ACFWAdvice, Authors and writing, Encouragement, Faith, Fear/Doubt, Friends of ACFW, Prayer, tips, writing 6 Comments

by Jenny Erlingsson @jennyerlingsson

I tiptoed up the stairs and closed the small bedroom door behind me. One hour.

I had one hour to start working on the book that had been pulsing in my heart for a couple of years. It felt like a life message I needed to share, even if it was just for my family. I had an hour to get thoughts together, type out some words and to release what I’d been longing to pour out.

I don’t know why, and I still can’t explain it to this day, but as I wrote it was like my ceiling lifted open up and sunlight filtered into my soul. I took a deep breath, realizing how long it was since I had done this. Not that I hadn’t done other things that brought relief or rest or accomplishment. In fact, I had just give birth to a beautiful new baby girl a couple months before.

But all of the feelings I’d have of being boxed in, uncreative, or as if I couldn’t even hear from the Lord, seemed to dissolve as I released what I felt He’d given me to. In that one hour, where my husband held my daughter and focused his attention on our two other kids, I felt like I was pouring scented oil on the feet of Jesus. As my mental fog dissipated, sweetness filled my lungs as if I breathed in deep of the fragrance of my own worship towards Him.

There He was, where He’d always been, as close as my next breath. And it took me writing out some words for that remembrance to be triggered.

I knew—and I know—that God is always with us, but in my postnatal, slightly postpartum state, it hadn’t felt that way. Not until I picked up the pen and clacked away on my keyboard. That’s when I realized that writing wasn’t just a hobby, but it was my fingerprint of worship. It is the core thing, that when I engage in, I feel the Lord’s pleasure.

Fast forward, a couple books and a country move later, I sit on the verge of the publication of my first fiction novel. I needed to release those other words that became my first book to step into what I’m writing now. And I needed the realization of then to meet me in the now, a sweet aroma to reassurance.

Let the aroma of your worship as a writer fill whatever rooms God desires it too—and you’ll encounter his delight as you do. @jennyerlingsson #writing #ChristianFiction #writingasworship #ACFW Click To Tweet

The majority of us who read this blog and engage with the ACFW community are probably in a similar boat. Maybe writing isn’t necessarily the core fingerprint of worship for you. Maybe it’s another craft or an activity that you enjoy or perhaps a skill that God has placed in your hands.

Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. ~ Colossians 3:16-17 NIV

As authors in whom the message of Christ dwells, when we write stories that that are thoughtful and entertaining and romantic and suspenseful and intriguing and hopeful, we do so for God’s glory. The beautiful part of that process is that we get to be partakers in the hope that He writes through us. Even if you only have five minutes to step away and scribble, or hours upon hours to compose, I pray you see it not just as a physical act, but as an act of worship. You are not responsible for the fragrance and how it spreads, and that means you never know where it will linger.

I hope you inhale that truth and exhale all fear and discouragement. Let the aroma of your worship as a writer fill whatever rooms God desires it too—and you’ll encounter his delight as you do.

Jenny Erlingsson writes romantic fiction and creative non-fiction to encourage deep faith in diverse settings. When she’s not ministering with her Icelandic husband or mothering her adorably feisty kids, she can be found writing and reading in the margins, with a side of Icelandic chocolate.

Comments 6

  1. What an inspiring post, Jenny! I can relate. In fact, my tagline on my email signature is “When I write, I feel God’s pleasure!” It is modeled on runner Eric Liddell’s famous quote, “When I run, I feel God’s pleasure.”

    Thank you for your beautiful, encouraging words. Blessings as you write for King Jesus! 🙂

  2. I had those moments as the Lord compelled me to write, day or night, just let the Holy Spirit take over. I remembered those moments when I needed the reminder that God is faithful; He enables those He calls to do the impossible; He is with me regardless of the circumstances I face…so many times I wanted to quit this long journey of having the book published, He always whisper to urge me to keep on keeping on. Whenever looking back at those milestones, He has enabled me to move forward toward the destination a little further along. I know in His time, in His way, the book will be published and His messages will take on His wings, In Jesus Mighty way, Amen.

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