Thursday, December 14, 2017

Why Do We Write? by Kathryn Spurgeon

Kathryn Spurgeon
Why do we write?

There are likely hundreds of reasons.

We might write because we love to read or to earn an income, or simply because it’s fun to scribble down our imaginations. For me, writing seems self-indulgent. I need to get the buzz out of my harried mind and down on paper, or my thoughts will disappear into the obsolete word dictionary.

Yes, writers must tell their stories. We see book ideas everywhere.

I took my young niece and nephew out to eat Korean food. It was their first time to try it. While we ate, I told them why I love kimchi and bulgogi. When I was nineteen years old, I lived in Korea for two years. I described the Ilmagwon Orphanage where I lived, the rice paddies and taking my shoes off before I stepped up onto the heated floor.

Then I shared with the children about the saddest Christmas in my life. How a tiny Korean baby and I spent the day in a foreign country eating watered-down rice, and crying together because we were both alone. No family around. No Christmas tree. No presents. No hot chocolate.

 I’m tempted to jot down that story. Write a book about it. After all, others might relate to my loneliness.

As a Christian, God encourages us to record stories for the next generation’s benefit.

Specifically, we, as writers, can write about how God works in people’s lives. How he reveals himself through his beautiful creation, gives understanding, or teaches charity and love.

Inspirational books are sorely needed, especially in this world of negative influences, daily offenses, and raw tension.  Whether fiction or nonfiction, a book can bring enlightenment and reveal enormous possibilities. There are so many ways we can give encouragement and instruction as we write about him.

Books have the means to give hope to people.

What other medium has so much influence?

I shared with my young relatives how God blessed me by letting me adopt this little Korean baby and how she came into our lives to bless us. How she brought laughter and joy. How she grew up and gave me wonderful grandchildren. After sharing that story, I hope my niece and nephew have more trust in how God takes care of us.
The reasons to write are as numerous as the grains of rice in Asia. I encourage you to take time to ask God why you write. He has a purpose. A specific theme.

Here are a few reasons to consider.

  • To glorify God
  • To tell his story
  • To encourage others’ faith
  • To help people through hardships
  • To share the gospel

The Lord said in Isaiah 30:8: “So, go now and write all this down. Put it in a book So that the record will be there to instruct the coming generations.” MSG

Go on. Tell your stories. Write from your heart. Convey the despair, the struggles, and the disasters in life. But don’t stop there. Don’t leave people wondering how to survive when catastrophes happen. Give them something good to take away. Write how God reveals himself through the worst times.

Otherwise, why do we write?

And the next time you want to hear about how God helped a young girl living in a foreign land, call me. We can chat over Korean food.


Kathryn Spurgeon, an award-winning author, has published over a hundred stories, articles, and poems. As an inspirational speaker and Bible teacher, she had taught in many states and several countries. She’s also published two Christian historical novels based on true stories, A Promise to Break and A Promise Child.

Kathryn grew up on an Oklahoma farm before moving to Korea, where she adopted two children. She and her husband, Bill, hold weekly studies in their home for international college students. They have 6 children and 12 grandchildren.
Learn more about Kathryn at her website:


  1. Lovely encouragement, Kathryn. My heart breaks for that lonely girl in Korea. I love how God blessed you in that dark time with that beautiful baby who became yours. I hope you do write that story!

  2. Beautiful and inspiring post, Kathryn! I love the verse from Isaiah.

  3. Thanks for the wonderful encouragement, Kathryn. I write because it feeds a creative need and a desire to make a difference in people's lives. And if nothing else, my stories will be the legacy I leave for my grandchildren and their children.

  4. Great encouragement, Kathryn! And I agree with Robin. You should write that story!

  5. Kathryn, such a beautiful story. You left me wanting to hear more about your daughter. I eagerly looked through the post hoping to see a picture. There's definitely a story here to tell. Thanks for sharing with us today.

  6. What a lovely post Kathryn. Blessings.

  7. I loved your story, your insight into why we write and wht we should. I will re-examine my motives when I start fresh again. Thanks.

  8. I am so lucky to know the person like you in my life. Thank you for reminding me God's love for us. Miss you so much, Kathryn. Please visit Korea again!!!!

  9. Wow Kathryn, it is a privilege to have known you and Bill the few years we spent together in Bible study at Henderson Hills. Those were very good times, no doubt! I have thought over and over again about writing, but then again...people would ask, who is Larry Holste. I doubt they would buy my book! :-) you have definitely been blessed my friend! Merry Christmas to you and Bill and all your family!


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