You’re having a hard time falling asleep tonight – which is very rare. Most nights you’re out before you even have a chance to say Amen after your goodnight prayers!
But you know you can’t sleep tonight because you know you’ve got to write.
You’ve been avoiding writing for a while now. Yes, you are busy now, but you’ve made time for it before (and when were you ever not busy?!), which means you really can do it, but you’ve been making excuses. Why? Because you’ve abandoned your first love (writing will always be your first love, green tea lattes a close second) in pursuit of more glamorous job pursuits that don’t entail much risk or unpredictability.
Do you remember the story of Jonah? The guy who ran away from what he knew his true calling was? The guy who needed a huge whale to swallow him to wake him up from the fact that he simply could not outrun God?
Well that story is in the Bible for a reason: to remind you that God is always one step ahead of you and He wants you to stay true to your God-given passions and not SETTLE for anything else because:
- He wants you to bring life and hope to other people!
- He wants you to be happy (and as you already know, living a life where you aren’t true to your passions as well as God’s calling is a life that gets tiring, stressful, and disappointing.).
You’ve believed the lie that your writing doesn’t really do too much good anyway and that for all the work that’s put into it, you could really be finding ways to better yourself or build a more impressive resume. And unfortunately, you bought into one of the worst half-truths ever: That small things aren’t all too important – it’s the BIG things that we must constantly aim at and strive for.
Yes, Jasmine, it is very good to have lofty dreams and big goals; BUT, at the same time, do not forget Jesus’ very words: “If you are faithful in small things, you will be faithful in very large ones;” or the Apostle Paul’s writings: “God chose the weak [small] things of the world to shame the strong [and big].”
Clearly, God was trying to make a point: That being faithful and committed to the ‘little’ assignments He has given us will amount to something FAR GREATER than our own self-centered ambition.
I know you had a very hard time turning down the internship opportunity that came your way today – I know it seemed like the perfect job for you. But this has been a reoccurring pattern; in fact, you’ve been having trouble saying ‘no’ to a lot of things lately. Just a couple of days ago, you wanted to say yes to an extra class, an extra hike, and another volunteer opportunity. Why?
It’s because you’re trying to CAPITALIZE on every moment of your life. Especially now that you’re in a new country, you feel a heightened sense of responsibility to ‘make every moment count.’ In your case, why is that becoming a bad thing?
Because it’s you using your own efforts to ‘try to make it big’ (relatively speaking, of course) – to try to create this ‘perfect life,’ to try to ‘please God;’ when really, when did God ever tell you to ‘try’ to make something of yourself?
The only thing He has ever told you to do is: Seek Me first, and all other things will be added unto you.
In seeking God today, you knew deep down inside that He was right: That ultimately, your efforts would amount to nothing if you chose to build a future that’s centered around “being the best________.” Life isn’t a competition the world tries to make you think it is. If you treat it like a competition, you’ll never win.
You were never called to be ‘the best.’ You were called to love. To love God, people, and yourself with everything you’ve got. When you love out of a heart that’s in loving communion with the Lord, you LITERALLY have it made! You don’t need to run around looking for the next big vacation, the next best job, the next best home, the next best anything.
Best is right here, right now. Not because of your circumstances, but because you know God is with you and you’re doing the right, ‘write’ thing; Writing a piece that you know you’ll read again as a great reminder in the future when more things will try to crowd out your clarity - and writing a piece that hopefully some of your readers will relate to and be encouraged by.
And that’s why you’re submitting this article at 3 a.m., never being so determined to submit an article after a month-long hiatus (praying that the jittery “tic-tac” of your typing won’t wake up your light-sleeping roommate).
Don’t you feel so much better now?
God’s way is the best way. Don’t ever forget that, Jasmine.
And don’t forget what your best friend told you today! “Pray to follow and hear God’s voice and calling even in the little things. And, don't commit to everything unless you really know you can DO everything!”
Finally, don’t ever forget, Jasmine – God is the Greatest Author of all time. He’s already written the story of your life, and if you just stop trying to write your own story, you’ll actually enjoy getting to read your own story and having the time and space to revel in awe of How good He is. The best part is - your story doesn’t ever have to end!