Do you ever feel like you can't do one more thing? That life is just too much? It's too hard? You're too busy? You're overwhelmed? You truly can't do one more thing?
Yeah, me too. At least some of the time.
I've been thinking on this a lot lately, mostly how to make a positive change. Last Sunday's sermon was helpful.
The pastor talked about family and how God designed us to work together. A church can't function if the pastor is the one who does everything. We need to live like family. After all, God created families and they are good. More about that in a moment.
Writing books is a solitary endeavor, mostly. I'd like to share a little about what being a novelist means in today's publishing world.
Did you know that novelists used to "just" write? (Well mostly)
I think I can almost remember this.
Alas, so much has changed.
Writers are now advertising experts, bloggers, publishers, researchers, secretaries, bookkeepers ... and they are also mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, caretakers. They work other jobs and serve in their churches. They have family's that need them and long to-do lists that have nothing to do with writing.
Yet, we are supposed to have minds that can think creatively (after fulfilling all the other tasks in our lives) and if we hope to create a novel we need the energy to labor through the hours that make up the months required to get to the place where we write The End.
I'm pretty darn sure God called me to write and I'm also pretty sure he didn't expect me to kill myself doing it.
I long to write great novels, to lose myself in unique and interesting tales and to get caught up in the lives of characters that I care about. But that doesn't always happen. The blaring horn of the world distracts me.
The difficulty is that the distractions matter too. The diversions, mysteries, heartache, and fun is part of what life is all about. If we skip those we really aren't living. We need time of quiet to listen to the hush of the forest or the humming noise of the city, time with friends and family, time to take in the moments with a child that will never come again - laughter and tears - we need to live it all.
I marvel at those who seem to live quietly in the ebb and flow of life. They don't fight the tide, but allow it to carry them out to sea and then rest when washed into a quiet pool. I long to find my way to such a place. And I am convinced that I will discover it in the quiet presence of the Lord. Or in the friend who comes alongside to help. And in the confidence to just let something go - to learn not to strive so hard.
And what about all the writerly things I need to do? I'm still sorting that out. I can't do it all and instinctively know that I should focus on what comes naturally and do the things I enjoy and to write about what I am passionate about. If I do that the tasks are not a chore but an opportunity to create and creating fulfills and sustains those who love it.
And what about family? We were created to love and help one another, to carry burdens and to pray for each other. Writers, need to encourage and uplift other writers. And readers you are part of the family too. Writers need to hear from you, words of encouragement can brighten a dark day. And if you find a book you love help an overworked writer by telling others about their work.
Above all, we need to be content and grateful that we get to share this planet in whatever place the Lord has planted us. He knows our hearts like no other ... and in this knowledge we can rest in his great ocean of love.
Grace and peace to you from God,