Writing a book worthy of remembrance

May 15, 2008

This spring I purposed in my heart to write a book over the summer break. Now that summer is here, I’m unsure of what exactly to write about! A children’s story? Or strictly ecclesiastical? I even have an amazing ghost story idea, of all things, that’s never been done before! I don’t really want to do anything with it, but the point is that it is not a lack of options that is hindering my starting, but rather too many. My dad would like to see me write a book of short stories from my year’s tour of duty in Iraq, and truth be told I already have favor in the market place with that from when I was a student at Iowa State University.

However, I told him that I would likely not pursue such an endeavor, for I know that God has skilled me with the pen, and therefore I live to glorify Him by my skill. It is only in that place that I could be without conviction. But again, should I use those collected short stories with the unveiling of my conversion and salvation as the pinnacle of such a novel, as covert evangelism, then I would still be using God’s free gift to honor His name. This is similar to what I would do with a children’s book, but the audience would obviously be radically different, and my method of preaching the gospel still disguised yet by allegory.

So, I am torn. For three years now I’ve been writing only either to God or about God to His maturing saints. Were I to write a book for the church, I would rather it be one of those skinny pamphlet sized books that sell for no more than five dollars – the ones that drip with revelation, they are so saturated with God’s glory; the ones that you just “happen” across, unaware that it was your spirit man drawn to its fragrant pages. Those are the books with substance and sustenance enough for an entire army of lovers after God’s heart, spanning with ease ages upon endless ages, yet never diminishing in potency. Whether I write this, that, or the other, it is a book worthy of even a seraphim’s remembrance that I desire to put my fingers to this summer, and I know that as a son My Father in heaven will bless it.

The Lord’s Christ be praised in all that you do! – Ben

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2 Responses to “Writing a book worthy of remembrance”

  1. steeno Says:

    My vote is for you to write a book on your Iraq experiences like you said. I think it would rock. I would pay more then 5 bucks for it.

  2. Ben Varner Says:

    At ISU for a short season I was an English Major, and in a Short Story Writing course, for one of our assignments I wrote a five page paper entitled “By the Rivers of Babylon” – I’ll email it to you if you like. My teacher, who has written best sellers and has been a guest on Oprah for her books (which isn’t exactly something to brag about anymore, but you get my meaning), ended up giving me a 100%, something that she had only done three other times in her 30+ years of teaching that course. She offered to guide me through the process of writing a book that summer (three years ago now), which in the end I turned down, as that was when we began making arrangements to move down here to IHOP.

    All that to say, I’ve already got a start on this particular project should I choose to do it over some of my other options. But again, I think that I’m leaning towards an ecclesiastical short book, and I’d more than likely focus it on Jesus’ death, resurrection, and ascension. I’ve spent the last three months or so devouring Hebrews 8-10, and come out with such an understanding of His ascension and its importance that I’m left wondering why the Bible is so clearly cross-centered! I won’t get too into that here, as I’ll be blogging about that in particular here shortly.

    Thanks for casting your vote though! I know that whatever I choose, the Lord will bless. So really it’s more a matter of what the world needs to hear than it is anything else. Because I do have a vision of the world having access to my writing! I know who I am and what I’ve been called to do, and composing apostolic letters *is* a facet of my ministry, to the glory of the Father, His Son, and the Holy Spirit. I should very much like my first book to be a thank offering and a burnt offering to my God for the future epistles I am believing Him to carry me along for…


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