Writing has been a lifelong passion. I started with poems when I was between the ages of nine and twelve. I moved on to short stories, writing throughout high school. I typically wrote about nature, animals, the environment. My words expressed my disappointment with the way that people exploit natural resources, kill animals, and pour pollution into the air and water. A few of my works were published in our yearly student literature booklet. Maybe I’ll include them in my blog when I can’t find the time to write anything else, even though they’re not within the topic focus.
English and science were my favorite subjects in school. I took Expository Writing and Creative Writing in high school, in addition to the required English classes. I always loved animals and have been interested in the life sciences, which led me to pursuing Zoology in college. I have wished in the past that I had earned a degree in English. I stopped thinking about what might have been shortly after I invited Christ to be the center of my life.
The first five years or so after I graduated from college were busy with marriage (a week after graduation) and becoming a working mother of two boys.
Shortly after I began working for my current employer in 1988, I got an idea for a children’s book and began writing again. That creative time was limited to writing in a notebook during my breaks at work. I have half of a manuscript sitting in a briefcase in my closet. The book educates kids about animals within a fictional story. It could be a series if I ever submitted it to a publisher.
We live in a small, rural, lakeside town with about 1100 homes. When my younger son was around 10 years old, our community newspaper asked for volunteer writers. I couldn’t resist the opportunity to write again, and to have people read my work.
I began writing a monthly column called “Nature Notes”. I would write about the animals we see in our neighborhoods and by the lake. If the month was one in which a holiday occurred, I would tailor the topic to the holiday. Residents might read about bats in October, turkeys in November, and evergreen trees in December. One summer, our lake association asked me to write about water snakes. Occasionally I wrote a travel article about our vacation.
I retired my column after eight years. Any time I could make to write would be intended for a potential magazine article. I had many ideas for writing about nature – mainly for children. I would devote Saturday mornings to my pursuit. Sometimes I would take a day off from work and do research on magazine publishers by familiarizing myself with their magazine at the library. Although I had many resources to help me submit articles to publishers, I never got around to writing any cover letters or submitting anything for publication. I knew (know) how difficult it is to get published, and I guess I just gave up.
I work in an office – the headquarters of a large brokerage company – and I have enjoyed writing an instruction manual and information for our intranet. I love to share information that helps others. This type of writing is not particularly exciting, but it does allow me a nice break from my regular duties occasionally.
Jesus Christ has been in my heart and in my life since early 2001. It’s been quite a journey of growth in my relationship with God. Sometimes thoughts just pop into my head about God and how I see the world through Christ-colored glasses. Usually these thoughts come when I have no means of writing them down. I record them on paper once I can do so. At first, I wrote in a journal.
My greatest desire is to bring other people to a relationship with God through Christ. It’s not just about ensuring their salvation (see my post about heaven if you’re unfamiliar). Loving and trusting in God changes our lives, and this faith is the answer to so many issues in this world.
After I began using Facebook, I used the Notes function to write anything that might plant a seed of faith, or that another Christ-follower might use in conversation with non-Christians. What I write and how I make my life kind of public might not result in an instant reaching out to God, but it might start the smallest crack in that shell around the pride that prevents others from humbling themselves to God and accepting his love and forgiveness through Christ.
I’ve always wanted to write a book. Much of what I’ve done as an adult is nonfiction. I was walking the dogs one evening, and thoughts formed about a fiction novel. The story is about two people on the opposite sides of Christianity, getting through grief, forgiveness, and taking that life-changing step of receiving Jesus. It’s another attempt at sharing the Gospel. I do have quite a bit written, but I abandoned the book for now, as the blog is kind of time-consuming.
It feels like I’m fulfilling God’s purpose by having immediate readers. I believe that I am supposed to go back to working on the book in the future. I try to listen to God’s voice (which comes through in thoughts and ideas) to discern what I should do, and I believe I’m on the right track. God knows there will be another time, a better time for the book.
I began this blog on March 27, 2010. It provides more flexibility, you don’t have to be a Facebook friend or their friend to read my writing, it can potentially reach more people. It’s kind of addictive, though, because I can see statistics of how many people visit my site. I don’t know who you are unless you comment, but still, I love that you are (potentially) reading what I’ve written for the purpose of glorifying God and benefiting you.
There are limitations in the blog, such as the font size and color. I use a size14 font in Word, and it still seems to come out small. Changing font and other things require HTML language, and I don’t have time to do that. You can use a little tool by the bottom right of your computer to enlarge the view, just above the time, if your computer looks the same way mine does.
I hope I am helping others think differently, know God through the Bible, and be inspired. I want to make it easy for you, too, to find links to fitness music and exercise videos, and to eye-opening Christian websites and great contemporary Christian music. My goal is to post in Julie’s Life Joy at least once a week. Please share it with your friends and come back often. I appreciate comments.