Sunday, October 1, 2017

Writing as an Act of Obedience

by Danetta Kellar @DanettaKellar

By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went even though he did not know where he was going. Hebrews 11:8, NIV

Way back when I was just a girl who daydreamed about writing a book one day, I thought I knew what the journey would look like.

I imagined Jo from Little Women tucked up under the eves by candlelight, bent over her manuscript, writing furiously as the black ink stain on her middle finger grew. There I would be one day, working away until my story was captured and ready to send off to the mysterious and powerful Publisher.

Since those early imaginings I have taken many steps to make my writing more than a dream, and not one thing has looked like I thought it would. I am still learning the lesson of Abraham for writers.

Called to Go
The call to write rises up in the soul of a Christian writer like the commanding sound of the shofar over the dusty hills of Israel. Some may try to hide from the sound, but the sound finds us and compels us to obey. The Maker of Words has called us to write. With every word, every phrase, every sentence, we move forward in God’s will for our lives.

Our Inheritance
I have been immersed deeply in the subject of God’s honor and glory for almost two years now for a book I am writing. In the beginning, I was a student, observing and studying from the outside of the topic. I spent hours examining and explaining, researching and seeking to better understand. But something transformational happened as I obeyed and began to write.

I became not merely a writer on the subject of God’s glory, but a recipient. As I learned more about Him, there were days I sat at my keyboard blinded, unable to see through the tears that streamed down my face as I worshiped. I was no longer on the outside of the subject, but on the inside, in awe of God.

As we obey the Lord’s call to write, we go forth into a place that will one day be our inheritance. We begin to experience the reward of God’s presence and glimpse His power. We may even be privileged to see other lives transformed through the words we have written. That is surely a beautiful inheritance.

Even Though
Shortly after finishing my Master’s Degree many years ago, I moved to East Africa to live in a remote area among the Aduruma tribe. My husband and I spent over a year preparing, learning about Aduruma customs, selling our belongings, carefully selecting a few crucial supplies to pack in our trunk. Although life in a mud hut was a new experience for me, I had prepared myself enough to survive.

Years later, we moved to the UK. In contrast to our move to Africa, we did not prepare much. Assuming we shared the same language and general Western customs, we did not anticipate culture shock. As it turned out, the adjustment to life in England was in many ways harder than our adjustment to life in the bush of East Africa. We thought we knew where we were going, but reality proved we really did not.

The writing journey may not look at all like what we expected. There are many things we can do to prepare and equip ourselves, but in the end, God is calling us to obey his leadership on a journey where he directs our steps. One step at a time, we obey and go, word by word.

By Faith 
Abraham did not know the way he was going. But what propelled him to begin the journey of obedience is what he did know. He knew His God was faithful and could be trusted. Faith is what urged Abraham forward, beyond all his doubts and the things he did not know.

Writing is, therefore, an act of faith. Writing is an act of obedience.

I hope you will join me as I continue learning Abraham’s lesson for writers.

How has your journey looked different from what you expected?

The #writing journey may not look like what we expected, that's when #obedience takes over - @DanettaKellar (Click to Tweet)

#Writing as an act of obedience - @DanettaKellar on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

Danetta Kellar is a writer, blogger, and speaker. Her interesting life has taken her around the globe, where she has had the privilege to witness firsthand the transformation of women from all walks of life and culture as they exchange lies for the Truth found in Christ. 

Her writing flows out of this rich experience and her own continual search for treasures in life’s darkness. Connect with Danetta online through her blog, Riches Out of Darkness, and on Facebook, or Twitter. 


  1. Great insight Mrs. Kellar. I think each author's journey is different, yet the same. I am just beginning my journey; even though I've been writing for some 30 years. What amazes me in my journey in faith is how God is placing people and things in my path to help me along the way. I love how He seems to smile and take delight when I find them. Of course, how He removes obstacles is also praiseworthy. Thank you so much for sharing your heart with us.

    1. You are so right Jim! I know I could not do this without the people and resources God keeps placing in my life at the right time. It is good to know we are not alone, and we are building something together for God's kingdom. Blessings to you today.

  2. A beautiful reminder of the transforming work He does inside us when we're obedient.

    1. Thank you Cathy. Being obedient is a daily choice and the reward is worth it. Blessings and peace to you!

  3. The road to publishing is taking longer than expected and is littered with rejections.
    However, as you indicate, writing is a calling and act of obedience.
    Lovely post, Danetta.

    1. Your very true first sentence is so beautiful and descriptive of the reality of our journey. Thank you for your gift with words and may God make all the rough places smooth for you as you obey Him!

  4. A most inspiring post, Danetta! Like you, I have wept while sensing Holy Spirit's Presence hovering over me as I wrote the words of His heart. When we co-labor with God, writing is an act of worship offered to Him.