Y’all, we’re already heading into the fourth and final week of September—that’s crazy! The days are noticeably shorter, cooler, and more colorful as the foliage begins to change. Tis the season for heavier sweaters, more cups of tea, and cozying up with a good book!
Speaking of good books, epic fantasy author Gillian Bronte Adams has been hosting a read-along of the first book in her Fireborn Epic, OF FIRE AND ASH, in celebration of the imminent release of book 2, OF SEA AND SMOKE, in November. Friends, this series is shaping into something truly incredible. I am in awe of the scope, scale, and skill of this story and how Adams tells it, and if you haven’t picked up OFAA yet, I highly recommend you do! It’s available in all formats.
Anyhoo, being as excited about book 2 as I am, I joined the read-along of book 1 to catch up on all the details in preparation for diving into an ARC (advance reader copy) of book 2 (guys! it’s amazing!!), and as predicted, it barely took me a week to tear through that 400 page beauty. It’s so good. But I’ve still been following along with the read-along activities each week (you may have spotted some of it here and there on my IG Stories and Facebook). I’m particularly enjoying the discussion questions, and this week’s is especially thought-provoking.
In OF FIRE AND ASH, there is a character named Jakim. He is a freed slave who took religious vows, then lied his way into a pilgrimage to his desolated homeland, only to be captured by a nation bent on war, where he becomes a war slave and translator. I am loving his storyline, and throughout book 1 we see Jakim motivated and buoyed by this sense of purpose he gets from his oath, his vows, and his sister’s prophecy.
The question for discussion is this: Where do you feel a sense of purpose?
I love this topic on purpose, and we’ve touched on an aspect of the subject here before, but I appreciate this other facet. Glorifying God in all we do is the greatest purpose and charge we have as children and servants of our creator, but where in that ‘all we do’ do you feel a sense of purpose? Some might call it drive or a calling.
It’s different for everyone.
Personally, I have a lot of hobbies. Maybe not as many as some, but still quite a few—things I enjoy doing (and that includes cooking & baking!) But if I think on it, there is one thing that gives me a sense of purpose more so even than the kitchen, and that’s writing. Storytelling.
It’s a difficult thing to pinpoint—because I really do loooove making food and sharing tasty things with people—but while I might get itchy if I don’t cook anything for a little while, I get lost and unsettled if I’m not writing. It’s a pattern I’ve noticed over the years.
Before I ever learned how to make pancakes, I was engrossed in story. I think about it every day, and I could go on and on about how amazing storytelling is and how intrinsic it is to the human experience, the depth of its origin and all that fun stuff, but at the end of the day? Having a story to tell—having a story to live—is where I find purpose, where I find a reason to get up and sally forth into the day, to keep on and press ever and ever onward.
Because, for me, storytelling isn’t just a hobby or a pastime. It’s a calling, a charge, a responsibility, even, given by God to share his light and truth with the world. Nothing speaks to and moves the human heart like story does. There are ups and downs in it, absolutely—it’s the farthest thing from easy! There are seasons where I’m writing words on the page like crazy and seasons where I struggle to grasp what I’m trying to say and doubt I’ll ever get anywhere with anything, but never once have I been able to give it up. Because storytelling is more than fun. More than art. It’s entrenched in my bones, woven into my soul, and to deny it would be a rejection of part of what I am.
That’s where I find a sense of purpose.
God made every one of us so unique and so intrinsic to the story he’s telling even now, and it’s so awesome to see how everything works together in ways we couldn’t fathom, how connections can be made in the most unlikely of places. So what gives you, friends, a reason, a spark for life, a passion? Where do you find a sense of purpose?