I've had some thoughts wandering around in my brain for a few weeks that I hadn't found time to write down. Blogging yesterday, I read Mommy Snark's latest on writing and that was the catalyst to get me started. I love that she's actually written a book. What a beautiful thing! And I believe it's wonderful in God's eyes whether or not anyone else ever enjoys reading it. (It should be noted that comments on her blog from those who HAVE read the manuscript are very positive and I hope to have the opportunity to read it for myself someday.) You can read her post here
My thoughts have been on creating and writing and learning and growing, and the smiles I feel from above as I make the attempt to do these things. Every time I purposefully embark on a new learning/growing experience, I palpably feel my Heavenly Father's approval, and this is true whether or not anything actually comes of the attempt. I first noticed this years ago when my husband, observing that I had an interest, bought for me the equipment needed to tune a piano. He suggested that I hire a tuner that would be willing to show me the ropes as they worked on ours. I found one and jumped in. As I proceeded, I felt a great sense of well-being about the process; a sense that my Heavenly Father was tickled pink that I was actively growing and learning something new just because I wanted to. Other things came up, and it mostly fizzled (please do NOT ask me to tune your piano!), but I was intrigued by the message from above.
That feeling has been repeated recently as I've signed up for and started training for a half triathlon, joined and then taken over responsibility for a book club, actively pursued increasing my sign language skills, and now I feel it about blogging of all things! Although I've thought about and wanted to write a book since high school, I have been loathe to start. The actual writing process was always drudgery to me in high school and I've avoided writing as much as possible in the intervening years. But blogging now has this hold on me that I need to explore. I've been pleasantly surprised at how much I'm enjoying this writing thing, and once again, I feel God nudging me forward to, literally, heaven knows where.
I , of course, feel God's approval as I try to be a better wife and mother, serve more diligently in my church, or help out the sick and needy, but for some reason, the immediate inner blessings of peace and approval, for taking "me time" to grow and learn just for the joy of it, were a real surprise to me. A sweet, happy surprise. I know it shouldn't have been. He is, after all, our Father. And being a father with all good attributes in full, he obviously wants me to learn and grow and find joy. I think I got caught up in all the selfless things that we're called on to do and had learned, rightly, to find joy in them most of the time. Doing things just for me seemed to be somewhat of a guilty pleasure, a necessary evil; something that I should minimize as much as possible. (Don't get me wrong I do it all the time, but I feel a bit selfish for it.) To learn that actively pursuing things just for me is heartily approved of by the Lord is a sweet and beautiful thing. (and a bit of a "duh" moment!)
So I'm pressing forward with writing, fitting it in between loads of laundry, doing dishes, and reading to my preschooler. I don't know where it will lead, probably not to a finished manuscript, but, at minimum to some improved writing skills, to more knowledge, and definitely to more joy. And that's a beautiful thing!