Friday, March 7, 2008

If This is Really So

Some people talk about having a life verse. I usually have a verse that serves as my "theme" for a year or so at a time. While doing my daily reading a couple of weeks ago, I came across what I believe will be my verse for 2008--Exodus 33:13.

At this point, Moses has already led the Israelites out of Egypt, and they've started their trek across the desert. God speaks to Moses personally, allowing him into his presence like no other man. And yet, at one point Moses becomes frustrated and confused. The Lord has told him time and again that Moses has found favor with him, yet he says, "Please, if this is really so, show me your intentions so I will understand you more fully and do exactly what you want me to do."*

That's my verse. After all these years of pursuing my dream of writing, I struggle more now with the question, "Is this really so?" than ever before. Maybe because the journey is getting so long. (And who knows more about long journeys than Moses!) The thing I'm asking about--wondering whether it's so--is a little different from Moses' question, of course. Day after day I wonder, is my writing a calling from God? Is it something he wants me to do? Or it is just a dream, a desire that has no more importance than a longing for a vacation in Hawaii?

This writing business takes loads of time and energy. I have limited reserves of each. I need to allocate those resources wisely. When I'm pulled away from my writing for the crisis of the day, I feel tremendous guilt. Immediately afterward, I wonder why. Most of the "crises" seem to be things God would want me to handle. In fact, I often feel guilty WHILE I'm writing, because I'm neglecting something else.

If God truly showed me that He wants me to write, that it's not just a whim, I think my energy and devotion to it would increase. Maybe after the crisis du jour, I'd find the energy to stay up a little later and write, anyway. On the other hand, if I could just figure out once and for all that writing is a joy and a hobby, but no more important than my knitting, then I could skip the guilt when I'm called away. I could just enjoy the experience whenever I could get to it.

So like Moses, I'm praying this year, "Show me your intentions so I will understand you more fully and do exactly what you want me to do."

* New Living Translation