Writing For Your Spirit
Writing For Your Spiritual Health
Why am I writing about spiritual health? How is this connected to writing? It's simple. Writing can be both healing to your spirit as well as affecting the whole person who practices it. It can touch your spirit and emotions. It can change your mental health, influencing it in a positive way. These things can even have an effect on your physical health as well. All of these areas are connected to each other.
In psychology, they sometimes encourage journaling. This helps us to get in touch with ourselves and process things. It brings much more clarity to what is at the root of problems that we may be dealing with. Writing has a whole host of other benefits to those around us as well. It can influence others either positively (or, negatively) depending on what we pen. It amazes me how, in our modern times, journaling, (or writing in other forms) is considered a revolutionary practice that can heal one emotionally. These practices have been around and recognized since ancient times.
Greek civilization, as well as many others civilizations, wrote poems, and engaged in other forms of writing. By its very nature, writing helps express thoughts, feelings, and even projects ideas. Let's take a look at the ancient civilization of Israel. Many of the biblical sages, expressed their thoughts through writing, preaching, and even physical examples were given to people (see Ezekiel chapter 12:1-6) that would cause them to reflect on issues, from politics, to morality and even faith.
One great figure in the history of Israel was King David who wrote most of the book of Psalms. His son Solomon, is credited in writing most of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and the Songs of Solomon. They were definitely a family that wrote quite a bit.
In psalms, David often writes about his internal turmoil and struggle with his trust in God. He often looked towards the heavens for help. This is often the prevailing theme in Psalms, as David spent most of his time on the run for his life, before he was king, and then, afterward.
His son Solomon is thought to have written the book of Ecclesiastes in the midst of great depression. One of Solomon's famous words in the first chapter (verses 2-3) is his most famous lament, "Vapor of vapors and futility of futilities! All is vanity (emptiness, falsity, and vainglory). What profit does a man have left from all his toil at which he toils under the sun? (Is life worth living?)" (the Amplified version)
Solomon was considered one of the greatest minds of his time. Other kings and queens came and sought him out for his wisdom and advice. He was the richest king of his era, and it was the 'golden age' of Israel. The ancient land of Israel was more of an empire, where leaders from other nations would come to pledge their loyalty, ensuring both their protection and good trade. Israel wielded great power and influence at this time in history, and its kingdom experienced an expansive prosperity and true peace.
Solomon was considered many things. He was a king first and foremost, but he was also considered a great teacher, counselor, and tactician. He was a true genius, and would have even been considered a child prodigy where wisdom and a keen mind were concerned. Yet, with all his wealth, knowledge, and everything else that life had to offer him, he suffered from a deep, and despairing depression which made him look at life (and everything around him) as empty and meaningless. His only way to deal with his questions-even to God, were to write them down. It was the only way for him to process his thoughts and feelings. Here, in the bible itself, is an example of the use of writing to both heal, and bring focus to one's own thoughts and emotions.
David and Solomon are just one of many examples of great minds that used writing in various forms. King David also composed and sang songs to express his most deepest thoughts and feelings. Both David and Solomon were great artists and warriors. Both suffered from many bad experiences in their lives. As I said earlier, David himself, spent most of his time literally on the run for his life. First, (before David was king), Saul who was king of Israel at the time when David was only a boy, was insanely jealous of him. David had been prophesied to become king over Israel by the prophet Samuel. Saul, knowing that David was destined to take the throne, tried to murder him on numerous occasions. One of Saul's own son's, Jonathan, even protected David from certain death, and helped him escape his own father's 'clutches'. Even after the death of Saul, when David was finally secure on his throne, one of his own son's, Absalom, divided the kingdom against his father and tried to kill him. David narrowly escaped with his life, and fled with a few loyal leaders and soldiers.
So, just what am I trying to get at here? Do you have to go through tragedy to be a writer? Do you have to be suffering from some kind of deep depression? If that were true, many would already be acclaimed authors. Although, some have used their personal struggles of overcoming great obstacles to become accomplished authors, one does not necessarily have to journal and become an author to write. The greatest purpose of literature is the expression of thoughts, feelings, and ideas. Some written work can be for personal reflection, focus, and spiritual growth. Sometimes the art of writing can be more healing, and spiritually freeing to the one writing it.
I have often read over my own work, and stumbled upon aspects of what I've written that have given me great revelation. I don't say this as a matter of arrogance, but with honesty. Sometimes we can write something, without ever having had the intention of showing an unexpected perspective or aspect of a situation. It's not until we've read over our own work, that we can have the greatest revelations to what we thought we understood about something. It's in these very moments, where we are striving to influence another to change their perspective, that, suddenly we find ours changed. At these moments, the spiritual, and our everyday lives, kiss and catch up to each other. These are the times that we experience true life. The living words that the living God spills out through our own pens gives us life. This is when we can experience life the way it was created to be-truly meant to be. Here is the place we find our healing, reflection, and a new way of living.
This kind of experienced is for anyone at anytime. You don't have to be an accomplished writer, poet, or even write and sing as King David did. You just have to take pen (or a computer in this age) and sit down and just....write. The greatest influence you can have on another is when your spirit touches your everyday 'hum drum' life, and it spills over to someone else....you were made in your Father's image! Living words came out of Him to create life around Him. Why not learn from His example and do the same?
I am not trying to say, nor influence you to any new kind of cultist belief or any such thing. What I am saying is true! We have a living God who has influenced people to write His words. Everyday, people all around the world feel new life (even now), from very ancient words that were penned thousands of years ago. Simply saying to people that they're 'just words' (written by others) and God had nothing to do with it-this is like saying that someone you loved who decided to dictate a letter to another-makes their letter null and void of love or meaning, nor is it sincerely their thoughts and feelings, simply because someone else wrote their words down for them. Saying that to people who've found true life through these words, is foolishness to them. It is in this very same way (that we), as we write, find life (and wholeness) through His influence at the very core of our being.
So, what am I trying to say? I am saying that we can find our spiritual life and healing in our writing. Whether it is personal journaling, writing a book, song, or poem, we can find our very lives, and (if we ask Him) even God in what we write. If I can influence you to do anything else to pursue His presence, pursue it in writing!
We are given a limited amount of time on this earth-why not spend it reflecting His image and let it 'spill over' from you to another? The greatest revelation you can have as a writer is knowing the power of your words, even greater, if it's influenced by Him!