Monday, August 3, 2015
The Perfect Plan
Okay, here's the deal. I love my job. Writing is so much more to me than a job. It's my life. Without it, I feel incomplete. On the days I don't get to write, I feel discouraged and depressed. On the other hand, when I'm working on a new project--be it a devotion, a book or a podcast--I feel so energized and excited. Each day is different because the topics are ever changing. I love it! Unfortunately, I don't get to do it as much as I would like because I am also responsible for the upkeep of the house, the errands, the meals and the care of the dogs (which is in and of itself a full-time job).
The reason all these other obligations fall to me is because Jason is busy working a job to earn a living so that we can eat because, while I love my job, the pay is nearly non-existent. Jason's work is physically tasking and mentally boring. His hours are erratic, leaving no room for a routine in our life together. And while he is happy to do what he must do to support his family, he's not exactly working his dream job.
As I thought and prayed on this the other morning, I came up with the perfect solution (or at least, it sounds perfect to me). If the Lord could make it where I can get paid well to do my job, then Jason could stay home and take up all the other "stuff" that is currently on my plate. If he could do that, he would have plenty of time to pursue hobbies and interests, as well as to take on the chores that I simply can't handle on my own (i.e. repairs, splitting firewood, yard work, etc.) He loves to cook, so he could be in charge of the meals too and could finally have the time he desires to try new recipes and go wild in the kitchen. And all the while, I could be using my time to write. It makes such perfect sense to me. He could do what he enjoys and free up more time for me to do what I enjoy, and I could get paid for doing the thing I love.
I have to be honest with you, though, this is not the first time I've "stumbled upon" this brilliant plan. I've thought of it many times before. I've talked it over with Jason, and he, too, sees its many merits. I've brought the idea before the Lord and explained it in painstaking detail. But you know what? I'm not any closer to making a living with my writing than I was when I first came up with my plan. In fact, just after thinking about this "perfect" situation again recently, I received notice that one of the sites I write for is no longer able to pay its authors. So, what little bit of pay I could depend on regularly was snatched away. Um, not exactly fitting in with my plan, Lord.
The truth is that I would love for this plan to come to fruition. I would love to have a regular writing routine day after day. I would enjoy having extra time to spend with my husband. It would be great to have someone else to do the housework and cooking because I do NOT enjoy those chores at all. It would be so nice to finally have some repairs done around the house and to be able to keep the yard in order for a change. It does sound perfect to me, but there's one problem (besides the fact that I can't seem to make any money). Proverbs 3:5 cautions me to lean not on my own understanding. Yes, the plan seems brilliant, but is it really? Will I still think so in six months? In a year? In five years? Could it be that things won't work out quite as lovely as I've envisioned?
I don't know about you, but I find it difficult to accept God's will about certain things when they seem so ideal to me. And frankly, I tend to pout and cry when God won't let me have those things that I dream about, especially when I feel those things would increase my productivity for Him. After all, if I have more time to write, that means I can write more devotions about Him, more books about Him. I can reach more of the lost and encourage more of the saved. And you have no idea how much I want that.
But I cannot forget that God sees the beginning and the end. He knows what's waiting in the bend of the road ahead. I don't. He knows what would really happen if all the pieces of my "perfect plan" fell into place. I don't. He knows what's best for me, and while I'd like to think I do too, the fact is, I don't. So, I have to come up with a new plan. Actually, it's not mine. It's God's. "Trust me, and stop leaning on your own understanding. I've got it under control, and I will work this out for your good. Stop worrying, and simply let me work."
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. - Proverbs 3:5-7