Me: You’re so observant.
Friend: Really? I hadn’t noticed.
Me: You’re so observant.
Friend: Really? I hadn’t noticed.
So, I just completed National Novel Writing Month through the Young Writers Program, and I’m feeling pretty excited about having another novel finished. This one, I feel, has the best message yet, and I’ve learned a lot about different writing styles, especially from Jenny B. Jones. I mean, four novels. That’s pretty fantastic, right?
Except I didn’t do it alone.
Sure, there wasn’t anyone else typing for me. But I am very willing to report that this novel, especially, I was able to recognize God’s hand.
There are some small details that I would just pluck out–the first things that came to my head. Some random scenes I added for fun, and to keep the book interesting. And without my doing a second of planning–and believe me, I love planning–everything lined up.
It’s amazing! And you know, it would be cool to take credit for that. But it would be even cooler to give credit where credit is due.
I totally didn’t make those details line up. I’m in the middle of NaNoWriMo. I’m not thinking! I’m trying to reach an insane word-count goal while balancing all the other things I do, and I’m eating a lot of Oreos. Seriously, I must mention Oreos in my book, what, at least seventeen times?
Some may argue that it’s luck, or coincidence, or the “lining up” of all the sugar elements in Oreo cookies and the insanity in my brain. But I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that my book is a thousand times better because of God.
That’s a pretty great feeling. A writing partner who’ll never let me down, and always increases the value of my work.
To me, that sounds better than coincidence.
So, I don’t know about you, but when I think of outlook change, I think of fireworks.
Call me crazy, but I’ve always viewed this kind of “revelation” to your worldview as something that just–bam. It happens. Suddenly, you realize where you had a flaw in the way you saw the world, and you just kind of go, “Wow! I can’t wait to tell somebody!”
Maybe that’s because I’ve never really experienced a “revelation”. To my memory, anyway.
But I’ve experienced it now. And boy, it’s certainly not fireworks.
It starts out small. Over the course of the time–maybe even years–you gain little experiences that add up in your mind. You don’t notice anything wrong. You might look at the world and think, “Man. Everything is really messed up.” And then one day, it hits you. And when it hit me, it was like the complete blossoming and unfolding of a flower. No fireworks. Just this unbelievably fantastic idea in my head, and that phrase: “Wow. I can’t wait to tell somebody.”
This little revelation of mine–it came as a whisper. A small, unfolding flower that had been growing in my mind. And now? Now it’s a part of my worldview. How I see the world, and everyone around me. Constantly.
You know, I’m kind of glad it came the way it did. I’m glad I can see where God put this realization into my life, through bits and pieces.
And maybe, sometimes, revelation is like fireworks.
But I’m glad my first came the way it did.
Warning: do not read while eating or drinking. The laughter resulting from the following post may cause choking.
I walk to the living room. I’m in the middle of writing my novel, and I see my cat, Sweetie, perched on the windowsill. I happily scoop her up and cart her back to my room, because the sun is shinning nicely on my bed, and she could nap there. As I pet her and call her my precious baby, among other things, my mother sings a pretty worship song. All is well. The cat hasn’t even started growling yet.
As I walk into my room, I feel my foot hit something resembling a furry brick. My body hurls forward, and I almost do a face-plant right on the hardwood floor. My other cat, Patches, who was being a helpful cat-brick, starts scurrying away from me, her nails scratching the wood. The cat who was peacefully napping, and then resting in my arms only moments before, does what any cat would do when faced with a desperate situation: jumps.
Sweetie, I can only imagine, went sailing through the air, her pudgy belly being drawn to the floor like a magnet. Her tiny cat arms were flailing, and you could almost hear her say, “Noooooo” as her fate with the hardwood played out in slow motion. Her eyes widen, she collides with the ground and skitters under my bed.
All of this happened within two seconds.
My foot hurts.
Me: Your brother is twenty?
Me: Tell him this, word for word.
Me: “The glory days are over. The days of darkness are coming. Soon, very soon, you will eat food and it will not vanish with no consequences. SOON, IT WILL MATERIALIZE ON YOUR STOMACH. A potbelly is in your future. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.”
Pineapples: He said you’re weird.
Me: Tell him he’s going to be fat.
My father is the pastor of the small church that we’ve attended since before I was born. He tends to find kingdom principles in pretty much everything, and it’s how I’ve been raised. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned to looked at things that don’t particularly have a God stamp on them and say, “Oh, yeah. There’s God in that.”
One example of this is my English class. It’s a pretty awesome class; we hardly ever learn about things like grammar or vocabulary. You’ll never log in to English and hear the teacher say, “Ready to dissect some sentences for an hour and a half?” I guess that makes sense–it is a Literature class.
That being said, the class studies a lot of works by various authors, looking at the philosophical aspects and opening the writings up to interpretation. I mean, what do you expect? God has nearly entirely been disconnected from school.
Anyway, we have this really cool quote from a dude named Emerson (also known as a sweaty toothed mad man), and it states, “Envy is ignorance…imitation is suicide.”
Isn’t that a cool quote? After a bit of dissection, you can practically hear a pop star singing, “Follow your heart” in the background. Maybe a couple of fireworks here and there. Because the quote is saying to be yourself. Don’t envy other people! Admire yourself. Don’t imitate other people! That’s cutting off what makes you you.
Now, to bring my awesome dad into this, who can even find kingdom principles in a football game–he’s raised me to see these principles. Maybe he’s not even trying to do so, but he is. And so when I see this quote, I see God.
Don’t envy other people. Why do you want to be what others are? God has a fantastic plan for your life. That’s right, a plan for you. You, right there. The one reading this. Why would you want to imitate others and give up on what God has for you? Why ignore his plan? Why sacrifice yourself and who He made you to be, all because someone else’s grass looked a little bit greener?
This quote by the sweaty toothed mad man could be shown in Jeremiah 29:11.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Add God into the equation. He’s going to be there, anyway.
Pineapples: So, is your cake done?
Me: Yes, but it swelled up, so it’s really fat.
Pineapples: Don’t call it fat, Lexi. It’s just big boned.