Writer’s room Inspiration is a funny thing—it enters uninvited into inconvenient places…on a bus, in the middle of a church service, or the bed you lie awake in at three AM. And often when you are looking for it, it slips through your fingers like a cheeky ghost, laughing as it passes you by. We’re all after it in some measure, whether we be songwriters, painters, parents or pastors—and I, who make my living off the fruit of its trees, am still struggling to understand in the slightest how it even works. Time and again it eludes me when I want to encounter it; and then, when I am least expecting it, perhaps in a doctor’s office or on a crowded flight, it pops its head in and says a few kind words and I have to hope I have the time or mental capacity to write them down. Just the other day, I was sitting on the large, unwieldy queen-sized futon couch in my living room with my fiance—we’d just finished watching a really beautiful film about art and creativity. I was sitting contentedly in silence, when out of nowhere, words came rushing quietly through my head and I scrambled for a pencil; “Deep in my heart, I feather and tar my folly and fear; Expose them for the fools they are, and the world comes clear.” I was moved to the core. My folly and my fear often hold me back from abundant life, and yet I run to them time and again for counsel and shelter. An image of them appeared in my mind, clear as day; two shriveled figures, black and sticky and covered in white feathers, looking thoroughly embarrassed. I looked at them and thought, These… these are what I have relied upon—fear and folly—these shrinking cowards. I had a small conversion of heart, sitting there on my couch, with a pencil and a piece of paper—all in the space of one little minute. But how had the thought come? It was as though I had accidentally tapped into someone’s phone line and eavesdropped on a conversation; I have no idea how or why that couplet arrived, but I received it gratefully, and have put it forth into the world like Moses in the basket on a river, praying for its survival. However it came, it got me thinking that there is a great dignity involved in inspiration. The human race has produced some truly remarkable pieces. There are Michelangelo’s David, Beethoven’s 5th Symphony, ThoughTs on InspIraTIon parT one: DIgnITy Audrey AssAd m u s ic ia n s c o r n er 48 CCM 48 CCM