We are all, in a sense, custodians of beauty and healing and truth

All who call on the Lord’s name will be saved. So how can they call on someone they don’t have faith in? And how can they have faith in someone they haven’t heard of? And how can they hear without a preacher? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of those who announce the good news.

Romans 10:13-15

Friday evening Rebekah and I watched the 2016 movie “Genius”, the story of the relationship between author Thomas Wolfe and his editor at Scribner’s, Maxwell Perkins.

We are both fans of great literature, we both know something of the creative process, and I – interestingly – recently completed a long reading of Wolfe’s first novel, Look Homeward, Angel.

There is a scene, early in the movie, just after Wolfe is offered his first book contract, where he is overcome with excitement. He stands in the hallway and literally cries out with exhilaration and delight.

– my first book (read it!)

I remember that moment in my own literary journey; such a release of emotion and a rush of jubilation! That first trip to the publisher’s offices: being flown in to Nashville, being picked up at the airport, getting to meet the editorial staff. And then the feel of holding that first copy of a book in my hand, seeing my name across the bottom of the cover, and reading the blurb on the back!

Wolfe’s need to write is palpable – “need” like air to breathe and water to drink and food to eat; hunger and thirst and creating. He could not stop the flow of prose, could not step away from his work; it was his lifeblood.

The same editor – Max Perkins – also worked with F. Scott Fitzgerald and Earnest Hemingway. Good grief! Imagine a dinner party with all three present!

Called to share the story:

I am not sure where I am going with this post. Maybe this is just an example of that need to write, or at least to talk about the process, and how it’s not just that I have a message to share, I have something of myself I am compelled to put into words and I need – need on the deepest level – to put my ideas and my soul and my love of this beautiful language in a form where it can settle on the minds and hopefully the hearts too of other people.

Max Perkins was very clear regarding his role, his calling; he felt tasked with the responsibility to connect Thomas Wolfe’s work with an audience, with everyday people, with a public who otherwise would have never known.

North Carolina writer Derek Maul

We are all, in a sense, custodians of beauty and healing and truth. It is not enough for me to write, I must share the story; it is not enough for you to read and to understand, there are others who need to know words of encouragement and mercy and grace.

“As it is written, How beautiful are the feet of those who announce the good news.– DEREK

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