Currently, I am participating in Jon Acuff’s 30 Days of Hustle campaign. I can’t even give you a link because he posts on his blog giving people 48 hours to sign on to the “adventure” and then deletes the post. The campaign is entirely through email and Facebook, and only for those who signed up during that 48 hour window. Check his blog, acuff.me around the end of the month to get in on it if you are interested.
The idea of 30 Days of Hustle is to work toward a single goal or dream. It could be a goal for that month, such as his January goal of losing 5 pounds, or a larger goal, such as publishing a book. I’m going to be very transparent here and admit that my hustle is not going very well. For January, I decided to try to learn WordPress so that I could transfer my blog over to self-hosted WordPress. I got a book for Christmas. I joined an extremely helpful Facebook group hosted by web designer Revka Stearns. I had to mention her name because she just goes out of her way on a daily basis to help people who post their difficulties with making WordPress web sites. However, about the only thing I had accomplished by the end of the month was getting a web host. By the end of February, I had transferred the blog and started posting again as well as set up the most basic of web pages under my name for my author site. I still know only enough about using WordPress to limp along at a very basic level.
So what does this have to do with avoiding God? Good question. Every day, I have mentally committed the hours of 1 to 3 pm to working on my writing. I did this in response to just about the strongest pressure from God that I have ever had about anything in my life. It took years for Him to get me to the point where I would commit those hours to my writing–in essence, to Him. To His will for my life as I can best understand it.
More often than not, recently, I have not actually spent those hours on activities related to my writing. My intentions are good. I come home from teaching, eat lunch, and sit down to the computer. That’s where it starts to go wrong. I begin to think of the things that are urgently awaiting my attention: a bill that needs to be paid today, a mess that sits waiting to be tidied, or an errand I need to run. Soon it becomes difficult to concentrate on the writing tasks (and there are many) at hand.
Many days, I give up and revert to my to-do list. The tyranny of the urgent wins the day. Other days, I just sit there paralyzed by indecision over the next step in the process. Do I work on my author web site? Post on the blog? Ready my manuscript for uploading on Kindle and other e-reader sites? I am soon mired in the quicksand of my own thoughts.
Soon I realize that my writing time has passed, and I have accomplished nothing. I have avoided this God-ordained task for another day. Sometimes I am bothered. Other times I am greatly relieved. And each day that passes by, I feel that distance between God and myself growing, bit by bit. It’s my own fault. Whether I mean to do it or it just “happens,” I am avoiding God by avoiding His will for me.
I know that God still loves me even in this failure. That’s not the point. I know I really can’t avoid Him. But I can avoid allowing Him to penetrate my soul. I can avoid doing His work in this life. I can avoid growing in ways that will help me know him more deeply.
I don’t know the answer to this problem; how to overcome my paralyzed indecision or ignore my shouting to-do list. Fixing my eyes on Him, I will sit down again tomorrow. And the next day. And the day after that. Even if nothing else happens, I will gain much when I don’t avoid His quiet insistence. And I guess that’s what matters.