And First

In the movie Mary Poppins, the titular nanny remarks, “Well begun is half done” in response to two children who have no desire to tidy their room. That sounds great, and we all know Mary was “practically perfect in every way,” but I bet she never had to write a blog post. Or more specifically, a first blog post. Most writers will tell you that the prospect of a blank page is terrifying. Exciting, refreshing, exhilarating . . . and terrifying. That white, empty expanse is an opportunity waiting to happen, a space to be filled with humor or knowledge or joy or pathos or ranting. A chance to tell the world what we want it to know, a chance to share ourselves with the world. Heady? Yes. Exciting? Of course. Scary? You bet.

Putting ourselves out there is hard. Putting ourselves out there for the first time is even harder. We want people to like us. We want people to be interested in what we have to say. And we want to form relationships with people so we can interact over and over again. Everyone feels this way, every single day. And so we take a leap of faith. I am taking a leap of faith. I have already accepted that my very first blog post will be far from the best blog post I ever write. I have tried to accept that that is okay. After all, if my first work is the best work I will ever do, what is the point of continuing to try? What is the point of moving forward?

But forward is the only way to go. In Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island, one of my very favorite books, the last chapter is called “And Last.” That’s a fitting ending, a nice way to wrap things up and bring closure to the story and to the reader. As a nod to this gifted author, I have called my first blog post “And First.” Because it is first. And because of the and which signifies that there is more to come. That there will be additions, expansions, other writing to share, new stories to read. Because I can’t start if I don’t try. Because I can’t move forward until I have begun. And so here I am. I have begun. I will move forward, as we are all meant to do. And I will remember that even the awesome and eternal story of God starts with the very beginning.


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