To leave my passion of writing behind.
I wanted complete solitude from everything I focused on up North. :) But, something happened, and I allowed the writing to remain a focus, even as the waves lapped to the shore, and the sand swallowed my feet.
And suddenly, out of nowhere, a giant tidal wave of doubt and frustration threatened to knock me down. Funny thing is, I had just accomplished two big feats in my writing pursuit. It all makes sense now. But these past few days, it threw me into a swirling downward mess.
The pinks and golds of a rising sun took me from the balcony of my hotel room, and sat me right down at the water's edge. I tried to listen, tried to hear God's call for me. What should I DO, Lord? Am I DOING what you want? I am so frustrated with this process. So defeated in the DOING.
Some people might claim to hear the voice of God, clear as the sun's glitter on the waves. I am not one of those people. God doesn't speak to me in an audible way. Today, I begged to hear His voice. I wanted answers.
The Spirit knows better though. I wasn't moved to listen. I was moved to worship. And everything came into focus. Well, not everything, just One thing. It's like I was searching the horizon with a strained zoom lens, and once I zoomed out, clarity sharpened the Image my heart needed most. The answer my heart craved, even against what I thought to be the answer I wanted.
Through a prostrate heart, as prostrate as the sea foam submits to the shore after a crashing wave, I realized the answer to all my questions...all my concerns: God wants me to abide in Him.
He's the One that's in the business of DOING. NOT me. I am worthless if I think that if I just DO something, life will be better, God will be happy, Love will flow freely.
No. In a world where DOING is often the answer...where success is built upon a foundation of effort and stress, where power is built upon pushing and trampling those in the way, where...and forgive me for stepping on toes...
the Church is stuck on guilt trips to get the believers to DO...regardless of the Spirit's leading...
I have discovered that nothing is worth anything if the DOING is my focus. Because it is when I ABIDE, when I allow the LORD to be in control, just as He's in control of the ocean waves--they never stop, they continue to approach and retreat, to swell and to dissipate--God is the ONLY one in control of the DOING.
Only when I ABIDE in Him, and give Him the power to DO through me, will I be moved.
Only in HIM.
What happens when we ABIDE? We worship and fall prostrate. And it's there where we have focus, because it's through the heartbeats of the Almighty that gives us Life. Through the tug of the Almighty's hands that we are led to do. Not because a person, or pursuit, or preacher tells us to DO. It's because when we ABIDE in Him, our heart beats in rhythm with His own. And from the overflow of HIS Love, we DO.
I feel like I've cried an ocean today. And I haven't. But my body feels like it. Such release. Such PEACE. Such abiding.
So, after this long schpeel...you might wonder what this looks like for my writing. Honestly, I was about to throw in the towel on this pursuit to publication before this morning. There are a few things I have discovered after worshiping at the water's edge:
1. I can remember the exact moment God bestowed this craving to worship through stories. It was at a time of my life I had prayed for something more...for something to satisfy amidst the colicky babes, the clinging toddlers, the monotonous days of motherhood (and I LOVE my kids...don't judge...my heart needed something else). As much as the Christian writing community talks about writing as a Gift from God...today, I grasped that it REALLY WAS a gift from God...an answered prayer of giving me something more...something all my own. He gave me the outlet at just the moment I needed it most... a mother of three small children, in a season of chaos!
2. With the help of some amazing women (you may have heard of them as the Alleycats), I can finally understand that, because this writing thing is truly a gift, truly an avenue to joy in my life, truly Spirit led to bring me to abiding in Him, publishing really is just a worldly perk. Yes, it's still my desire to see my name in print some day, but it's not the culmination of this gift. Far from it. I think there will be a much grander finale to my story writing, and I will dream that it involves a more Heavenly audience.
3. The DOING is not up to me. Abiding is. And like I said, the writing thing is one way God allows for me to ABIDE with Him. AMEN! Wow, He gifted me in a wonderfully joyous personal way to ABIDE in Him. I feel BLESSED!
My husband and I talked a lot about creation this trip. It's hard not to when you have the vast ocean before you, the rising sun, and the sea of stars at night. And when I sit and allow myself to absorb the creation around me, I burst with an urge to cry and write all at once. If writing wasn't God-given, then could I be so moved to write by merely observing His Handiwork?
Writing is my song. It is my worship. Writing is the pursuit God has given me to ABIDE.
I can't DO. Just WRITE.