Do you ever catch yourself wishing that God would give you a little break from all the excitement? I’m not talking new contracts, speaking engagements, and writer’s conferences. I mean the “Is this my life or a made-for-T.V. movie” kind of excitement. You know—the events that you eventually use in books and speaking topics.
I remember sitting in the choir room at church with my friend Margo, waiting for practice to start. We had just celebrated New Year and were ready for a fresh start. Margo and I had had eventful year so I thought she’d appreciate hearing my New Year’s resolution.
“My New Year’s resolution is to stay as far away from hospitals as humanly possible.” I grinned, very impressed with myself, as if that alone would make the difference.
Margo laughed. “Mine is to stay off the prayer chain.”
I broke mine and Margo’s by mid-February.
A few months later I sat beside another friend at a ladies’ luncheon. Both of us had received a lot of kind comments about our ability to handle a season of perpetual crisis. It felt nice to know that I was teaching my sisters in Christ about trusting God, praising Him in the storm, maintaining joy in suffering, and allowing trials to grow me. But I was beginning to feel like one of those old Stretch Armstrong dolls (which, by the way, oozed nasty goo when stretched too far). If only I didn’t feel so worn out from the events that taught others so much. I knew my friend Lindy could relate. Finally I had to ask.
“Do you ever get tired of being an inspiration?”
She got that wide-eyed finally-someone-understands look. “Yes!”
“Me too. I wouldn’t mind a boring uneventful life for, say, a week.” But we also agreed that the bad stuff was worth it if God could use it all for His glory and others’ good.
Think about it. What do we learn more from; the easy mundane days or those that we can’t get through without God’s strength? What scenes most often season our writing; the truths that we tapped into just in time to avoid pain or the lessons that we learned through pain? What seems to impact readers; the vignette starring my seven-year-old saying something hilariously clever that also happened to have a spiritual application or the one starring me struggling to trust God to cover our bills?
So as inviting as boring and ordinary sounds sometimes, maybe our lives aren’t supposed to be that way. At least not for those of us who long to offer hope to a hurting world. Join me this week in a challenge to accept and even embrace the craziness, knowing that God has a use in mind for it. Maybe instead of begging for a break we can start taking better notes.