Christian Viewpoint: Let’s travel together as we ask the age-old questions and 'maybe some of us will acknowledge, and befriend and nurture the inner quester after the God in whose story we all have a part'
Easier access to your trusted, local news. Have a look at our digital subscription packages!
Just before Christmas I met the team who run the Writers’ Hub at Inverness Baptist Church – Barbara Henderson, Fiona Black and Brian Robertson. You’ll find them there every second Thursday morning, welcoming you to a place where people who write find space and quietness to be creative.
Barbara, Fiona and Brian are all writers, but come from different backgrounds and write in different genres. Barbara creates children’s stories, Fiona plays and poems, while Brian focuses on local history.
But they share a need for welcoming space where they can think, and write, and find encouragement.
When the idea for the Writers’ Hub was first mooted, they were surprised to discover how many “closet writers” there are. People who keep quiet about their writing, feeling it’s not important, or they’re not very good at it, or it’s pretentious to claim to be a writer. People like these are especially welcome to the Hub.
I suspect that there’s also a surprising number of “closet questioners” – people who, in their quiet moments, wonder whether life has a purpose, whether there’s hope to be found in the middle of tragedy and crisis, whether the great, personal creative presence religious people call “God” might actually exist.
Such folk may find the thought of going to church daunting, assuming the people who attend are experts in believing, assured, knowledgeable and “together”. The best churches create welcoming contexts, not just for community groups like writers but also for hesitant spiritual travellers.
Of course, if you get to know Barbara, Fiona and Brian you’ll discover they don’t have it “all together”. They know what it is to struggle to get the right words in the right order. The hub is for writers who know they’re not perfect – and that’s every writer.
It’s exactly the same with churches – they are not places for ultra-holy folk, but for truth-seekers travelling together.
For the team, there’s joy in the mutual journeying which takes place at the Writers’ Hub – the day I visited they’d decided to explore the energy of working together on a shared project for Christmas.
Barbara says: “I feel at my best when creating something new.” And that’s what church is about too – imperfect people travelling with one another and with the God of all creativity, doing new things together, discovering and being their best selves.
Maybe this is the year some of us will acknowledge, and befriend and nurture, the inner writer. Maybe some of us will acknowledge, and befriend and nurture the inner quester after the God in whose story we all have a part.
For Christian Viewpoint columns click here