I am a planner.
I like order and for things to be in their place. It feels good to me if my pantry veggies are all lined up in neat rows with the labels facing forward for me to see them. If I start something I finish it. I live for the hour on laundry day that all the hampers in my house are empty. And then… the end of the day hits and my kids take showers and it starts all over again. But that short window of time when it’s all done is glorious to me. Maybe that’s why it has taken me nearly three years to finally officially start writing. I want a clear plan. I want to know what steps two, three, four and five will look like so that I can know exactly how it will be accomplished. I want to see the cans all lined up.
“What am I waiting for?” It’s a question I have asked myself more times than I can count. I write at home for pleasure. I write on social media and have written guest posts on blogs. I have even submitted my own writing for a devotional book. I enjoy writing. I have written and spoken to groups of women on many occasions. So why then do I keep waiting?
The honest answer is: I have fear. Fear of failing. Fear of criticism. Fear of getting in over my head. Fear of not having enough time for my kids or my husband. Fear of not representing myself or my Jesus well enough. Fear of hard topics. Fear of not managing my time in a way that keeps balance in my home. I could keep listing fear after fear after fear. I know that fear is not from God. I know that He is enough and that I should not let fear keep me from doing what He has asked me to do, and yet, I wait. I have done some pretty hard things in my life. Things that required actual blind faith. Things that could have, and sometimes did, drastically effect my daily life. So why was this one thing so hard to start?
I have just figured out why. This past week I finished reading a book called, “The Brave Learner”, by Julie Bogart. I read it hoping to gain some new ideas to add to our home school life. The entire time I was reading it I felt so convicted within my own spirit. For days I couldn’t put my finger on exactly why I was unsettled. In her book Julie writes about how as moms we often focus on mechanics and necessary steps in raising and teaching our kids. We check off the boxes of what our kids “should be doing” or “should be learning” based on how everyone else is doing it. Julie emboldens parents to think outside of that box. To encourage our kids to see what excites them and lean in to that. To try new things and spend generous amounts of time exploring those passions so that the spark can become a fire. Yes! My kids need more of that! And then it hit me. I have not done that for myself either!!! It’s why I felt so unsettled while reading her book. Writing excites me. It always has. I know that! My kids know I love to write. They know I dream of using my words to make a difference in the world. Even my niece who is in the 2nd grade knows that about me. A few months ago she gave me a gift, an eraser she saw in the store and “made” her mom buy for me. Not a fancy eraser. It’s a huge purple eraser that simply says “always write” across it. They all know this about me! They are all watching me. But am I leaning in to my spark and fanning it so that it can become a fire? Not so much. And if that is the case, what example am I setting for them?
So today is the day. It’s the day I begin to fan the flame. I don’t know what the fire will look like. I don’t know if the fire will spread. But I do know it excites me and that is reason enough to write!
What desires or passions are you holding inside of you? What spark has our creator put inside of YOUR spirit that you are waiting for the right time to fan? There is no better time than now! Our kids are watching us. They will either learn to fan their sparks or let them fizzle out. Let’s show them how to burn brightly!
Here is the link to Julie’s book if you are interested in checking it out. https://thebravelearner.com/