I'm sitting here looking at the blinking cursor and feeling a little intimidated with all that white space on the screen.
In all honesty, I really and truly enjoyed this past week of not writing. I gave myself a super-duper-mini-sabbatical from blogging/writing/trying-to-put-thoughts-to-paper/scribbling. And it was grand.
But that also bothered me a little bit.
If I truly love writing (which I do) and if I like this platform for sharing my thoughts (which sorta do) and if I feel like this is an opportunity which God has given me (which I think is true) ... then why wouldn't I miss it?
In spite of this feeling of insecurity, I made a decision to jump back in - get the gears working again, work out the squeaks, fall back into a groove - and trust that God would give me direction. Surely if He intends me to continue on here, He will provide the inspiration, the desire, and a compass for my course. I started brainstorming what my first post of the new year would be. And I waited.
As I lay in bed on New Year's Eve at about 11:13 (yes ... that is the pair of party animals we were this year!), my mind was blank regarding what to write. But it was bursting with other thoughts!
I wrestled with the pressures of writing and the freedoms of the previous, writing-free week
-- maybe I need to release the expectations I have for myself.
I tossed back and forth the idea of pursuing other writing options
-- but with limited time to write, I would have to be picky about where I invest myself.
I questioned the significance of my writing
-- what is the purpose of this labor? do I keep at it? quite honestly, who gives a hootenanny?!
As the digits on the clock marked time toward midnight, inspiration and sleep continued to elude me. With all these thoughts and more bubbling around in my brain, I finally did the only thing that I knew would help. I prayed.
"Okay, Jesus ... this is all Yours. I don't have the energy or the oomph to muscle through all this. If you want me to keep writing, I need your help. And I really want to go to sleep. Amen."
I felt the promised peace settle over me. And in my mind's eye, Jesus brought to mind an image from earlier that day.
Ashley and Lydia are standing side-by-side on the gymnastic mat. In front of them is the play highchair from the basement, but today it has a different job. Propped up on the tray of the chair is "The Treasury of Amelia Bedelia". The girls ask for our attention and begin to sing.
"Follow the star, follow the star, follow the star, follow the star ..." (That's a shout out to you, Cousin Rebekah!)
They mumble through the other lyrics, "reading" from their "sheet music" and return to the chorus, "Follow the star, follow the star to Bethlehem!"
They finish and smile. A little bow as we clap. And before the ovation quiets down, they jump back in.
In their own little way, they are sharing a bit of beauty with us. And they are enjoying it. A lot.
I see again their little tootsies standing on the hot-pink mat - their stage. I see their joy in singing for us - their gift. I see their satisfaction in the smiles and applause of their meager audience - their joy.
And I hear God speaking to my heart. Again.
Sitting here on this scruffy folding chair with my fingers finding the letters to my thoughts, I am perched on my own little stage. As letters become words, words become sentences, and sentences become thoughts, I am sharing this God-given gift in my own small way. As I sense God's pleasure in my simple use of this passion, I experience joy.
And I get to share a little beauty, and enjoy it, too.
So ... I guess I'll be back again tomorrow! Because I want to share with you about last week ...
But what about you?
Where is your stage?
What is your gift?
What gives you joy?
How are you sharing a little beauty?