I sometimes think about thinking, about thought. How it is such a gift and yet how we seemingly delight in twisting it into an instrument of torture.
I believe we do the same with many of our blessings and gifts. Our society has an “earn this” mentality (thank you, Saving Private Ryan), and we think the only way we can keep or earn our blessings is to work harder at them, to make ourselves worthy to possess them. How brilliantly stupid. And yes, I fall prey to this thinking as well, or I wouldn’t mention it in the first place!
My writing is a gift and a blessing from God. I am not being boastful; I am stating a fact. God designed me to write. How I am positive of this? The story I wrote for the contest a few months ago–the one that was a finalist–was about God and His desire for us. I had absolutely no intention when I set upon writing the story of making it a Christ-centered piece. The longish short story on which I have been working (Every Story Has a Beginning) — a total archetype of God and man. Lila is God, Muriel is the prodigal son, the people of Alteria are all of us…and again, I had absolutely no intention of going there. He gives me the words, He gives me the stories, and He gives me the passion and the drive to relate them to you. He created my mind to capture thoughts and words and images in a new way. He gave me a studious and curious personality. He dropped the love of written word into my heart.
And yet…yet I feel as if I have to make Him proud, really work my blessing to the fullest. And yes, to a degree this is true. It would be a shame, a waste, and blatant disobedience to His will to let my gift rot and rust. My gift was designed to be used for His purpose. He is not, however, angry or disappointed if one day all I can write is a silly haiku, or a week goes by with nothing written at all. He is ALWAYS proud of me, no matter what I do or do not do. He is proud of who I am, not what I do. And He knows us, He loves us, He delights in our happiness. I believe that is why along with our gifts He also gives us a supreme joy and pleasure in what we do. It is I who robs the blessing of its joy when I think that I must “earn” it. My gift was never meant to be earned: that is why it’s called a gift. Praise be to God and His goodness!
Think about your own blessings. What has He gifted you to do? Are you forcing that blessing into a box? Are you trying to earn your talent? He meant for you to enjoy it — He made sure to get you exactly what you would like. You won’t need to return it, and you don’t need to pay Him back for it. Just enjoy who He made you!