Sunday, August 11, 2013
My A-ha Moment (Or, Realm Makers Part 1 1/2: My Thoughts on the Birth of a Genre)
The exception is when the blog post is about the blogger and a major a-ha moment that happened to them because of the sermon or devotional or whatever.
Which is what happened to me today.
Our Sunday school lesson this morning was about following God's will. Are you spiritually paranoid, meaning you worry about every little decision (red shirt or green today?) being "wrong"? Or are you spiritually ambivalent, meaning you can never discern God's will and have basically given up and gone your own way?
Well, my answer was that I'm spiritually frustrated--meaning I don't worry about the insignificant details, but I do want the general path of my life to follow God's will, and I'm not always sure what that is. I think a lot of us feel that way.
I spoke up and talked about this in light of my writing. I said that I do feel that writing is something God wants me to do, and I tend to get all worried that I'm not working on the right thing. Should I be writing more (even though I get a lot of comments about how prolific I am)? Should I be marketing more? Should I be giving up and spending more time with my family? Should I be giving up and pursuing something else?
I went on to say how I feel like my (lack of) success as a writer doesn't always seem like it's reinforcing the idea that this is what I ought to be doing, that this is what God wants me to do. Yes, I admit, I said that because I'm not on any best-seller lists (just my example) maybe it means I shouldn't be writing.
But then, stuff just started coming out--thoughts, translated into words, that I had never considered before.
I haven't had any big successes, but I've had lots and lots and lots of little ones. Those little ones really add up. Think about someone tracking an animal through the woods, finding little things like broken branches and half-footprints and such. I've gotten small awards and great reviews and these have all been strung along my journey, each saying, yes, you're going the right way, take the next step.
And then my thoughts, and words, went to Realm Makers. I went there looking forward to meeting all these people, fellow writers, that I've gotten to know online. THAT was the best part of the weekend and the thing I most looked forward too--and I'm so happy to say that everyone I met was even cooler and more wonderful than I'd hoped for :).
But what occurred to me today was that I got so much more from the conference. And no, I don't mean that I learned a lot (although I did!).
No, what hit me today, what made my head spin, is that writing is just a part of what God has in store for me. But the big picture is this:
I get to be part of the birth of a new genre.
Christian Spec-fic is just being born right now. It's been developing in a hidden place where so many people aren't even aware. But it's coming out! And everything -- EVERYTHING -- that happened at Realm Makers felt like it had God's hand on it. God's blessing.
We ARE honoring Him. We are birthing a genre that God wants out there. I could feel it, all weekend, with every word said, every friendship strengthened, every round of applause.
As I said in my last post, Becky Minor's organizing skills blew me away. But you know what--she couldn't have failed if she'd tried. She stepped forward in obedience to God and took on this huge project, and while she is amazing, she had Him backing her every step of the way. And the volunteers, and the attendees....we were all a part of it, all of us stepping up and saying, yes, Lord, we're willing to do this for You. Not just willing--we're excited all the way down to our bones over it!
And. It. Was. Awesome.