Saturday, July 30, 2016

In Everything Give Thanks 7-30-16

1. I am so thankful that Thursday I gave my two weeks notice to the dollar store I've been working at. I have been dreaming of leaving for over a month, and praise God that He has let that happen.

2. I get to leave my current job because I now have a full time job! It is not the writing job I have dreamed of, or a more cushy office job that I would feel better about having, but I will be working with chocolate, and I hope and pray it is a better situation than my current job.

3. Also Thursday, I wrote about 1,687 words of my novel, which makes me so happy! I haven't had a good day of writing for so long.

4. I am thankful for long distance friends that are still dear to me and are such an encouragement, whether it is through emails the phone, or Facebook. Though I wish they lived close, I have the greatest friends. 

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

I Need Thee Every Hour

 Some things are hard to write about.

 Like how I feel that changes are happening to me too fast, but at the same time too slow. I want everything to slow down and speed up at the same time.

 How I wish I knew where I will be this fall, to have security in a plan.

 How I feel like I am not sure how I arrived sitting in this rocking chair typing these words.

 How lately the times that I have felt happy have also felt like I am only avoiding a certain upcoming doom. I can be happy and smile only as long as I am distracted and not letting myself think about my job or my future.

 But what doom? What is there to fear?

 The atmosphere at my work is often not pleasant. Every day I do something wrong. Every day I learn something new that I should have been taught a month ago. The lady I usually work with demands that I do things in a time frame that is usually impossible. They talk about their employees behind their backs, and I wonder what they say about me when I am not there.

 But my life is not in danger and I am getting paid. So why this paralyzing fear when I wake up and realize that I am working today? Why do I find myself hyperventilating in the shower like I am about to give a speech? I just want the fog that circles me to go away. 

 I can't explain my irrational fear of my job, a fear that has lasted too long. I don't know how long it will last or how long I will have this job. I don't know why God has chosen for me to be in this situation with so many unanswered questions. 

 All I know is that I have never prayed so much in my entire life. It is the first thing I do in the morning, before I am even out of bed. It is what I am focused on in the shower instead of thinking of stories or random thoughts. I pray as I get ready for work. I pray during any spare seconds at work. I pray during my break. I pray in the car. I pray on my walks. Because though I have always needed Jesus, now I feel that need like I did when I first started college completely alone and one thousand miles away from home.

 Now, back at home four years later, I still need Him, and He has not stopped showing me that.

 He did not forsake me on the cross. He did not leave me four years ago as a freshman, or any of the hard times throughout college. So why would He leave me now?

 Oh me of little faith.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Grace for the Writer

 Being a writer isn't easy. At least not for me and this is why:

 1. I am the kind of writer who only wants to write when I am inspired- when I have an image burning in my mind that I am dying to put on paper, or when a piece of dialogue comes into my head. This is hard because most of the time I don't feel that inspiration and therefore feel like I am forcing myself to write, leading to feeling stupid that I am a writer who hardly writes.

 2. Most people consider my writing to be more of a hobby. They think it's cool and sound impressed and say that they could never be a writer. But then when I share that I majored in creative writing and hope to make it my career, suddenly, even if they don't say anything, I feel judged at times, like what I want to so is unimportant, I'm being lazy, and that I wasted money on a major that will get me nowhere in the world. 

 3. I consider my writing to be one of the most important things in my life, but no one else in the world seems to acknowledge that. It doesn't seem productive. It doesn't make good money, so sometimes I struggle to think of my writing as worthwhile. 

 4. I have doubts. I doubt that I will ever finish my novel, that I will ever be able to make money from my writing. I worry that though I don't regret studying creative writing, I will now spend the next ten years paying for that decision by working at random jobs to pay for loans.

 But that's where my writing group has been such a blessing to me. I have been blessed with two friends that I made in college that are as serious about their writing as I am, and we have formed an informal writing group. Currently, we report to each other every so often on how we are doing with our writing and we offer each other advice and mostly encouragement. A few weeks ago I shared how I was struggling with my writing lately, especially with starting my part time job, and something one of my friends wrote to me has stuck with me. He said, "You must give yourself grace during this time of transitioning into your job."

 Grace for my writing? Strangely, I have never thought of that. But of course I need to give myself grace. As I am adjusting to my new job, it may take a while to figure things out, establish new patterns, and get back to normal. I need to give myself grace just like Jesus has given me grace for all of my sins.

 And then I realized that I need to give myself grace for all other aspects of my writing, too. There are many times I need to push myself and make myself write even when I don't want to. I need to ignore people who think my major in college was a bad decision. I need to trust God and faithfully do what I believe He has called me to do. But I need to also give myself grace for the times when I do struggle, when I do doubt, when I can't make time to write, when no words are pouring out of me because that happens to every writer. 

 So if you are a writer, give yourself grace just as our Father in Heaven gives us grace.