Get This Write
The week of May 23
Many of you know that I have been in the midst of writing a novel. It has been fun but it has taken time. Lots and lots of time. I don’t know anyone who really enjoys writing. I know a lot of people who enjoy being finished writing. But it is pretty satisfying to look back over what you have written and realize that at one time the page was blank and now there is a story that has been born. Then just when you start to get a little bit too smug the editors start working on the story and you feel like you don’t know how to write anything at all. So it goes as you write.
Have you ever read the following verse ? Habakkuk 2:2 says, “Write down the revelation.” There is an old proverb: the shortest pencil is longer than the longest memory. If you don’t write down the revelation then the revelation will be lost.
Do you write down the things that God places on your heart? While you answer that here is another verse to noodle on. II Corinthians 10:5: “Take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” We have talked before about how important it is to be transformed by the renewing of our minds…and there in our noggins there are thoughts that need to be taken captive. We’ve got to control our thoughts because we become what we think about. I think that verse is multi-dimensional in meaning and application, but I think one way we “take captive every thought” is by writing down our thoughts. It’s that simple.
I heard about a study of three hundred of history’s greatest minds. In their lives there was one common denominator: all three hundred geniuses recorded their thoughts and feelings, their ideas, insights, and observations, their reflections and questions in a journal of one kind of the other.
The difference, or one of the differences, between successful and unsuccessful people is what they do with their ideas. I love the way Atari founder, Nolan Bushnell, put it: “Everyone who’s ever taken a shower has had an idea. It’s the person who gets out of the shower, dries off and does something about it who makes a difference.”
Successful people have a plan for capturing their ideas and then acting on them. Unsuccessful people forget about them. Have you ever heard the story of how Jeff Taylor got the idea for Monster.com ?
He woke up a 4:30 AM one morning and began writing down a flurry of graphics and text on the pad of paper next to his bed. Then he got up and went to a coffee shop and spent the next five hours jotting down his business plan for the job search engine.
He said, “It would have been pretty easy to have rolled over and gone back to sleep, and that would have been a multibillion-dollar opportunity I would have let go by.”
Here’s the point: write stuff down.
I think it’s a spiritual discipline. It will help you grow depth.
I write notes in the margin of every book I read. That’s why I write stuff on napkins, note pads, receipts, and any other spare paper I can find.
We often talk about keeping a spiritual journal. Fill it with prayers, prayer lists, thoughts, ideas, notes from Bible studies you hear, notes from your own personal studies, fill it with notes and observations about the journey that God has you on. You might find it to be a resource that over time becomes more and more valuable to you.
For what it’s worth, Leonardo Da Vinci never went anyplace without his notebook. He was constantly recording ideas and observations. Even on his deathbed he took detailed notes about his symptoms. We still have seven thousand pages of Da Vinci’s journals. In 1994, Bill Gates purchased eighteen pages for $30.8 million!
I’m not sure our thoughts will ever be worth that amount of money, but they are worth capturing. Especially God ideas, dreams, and visions.