Friday, February 01, 2013

The Next Page

My attitude toward writing has changed significantly over the last ten years or so. At first, it was all about the romance of it. The lonely writer locked away in his room, bent over a keyboard, his fifth cup of coffee that day sitting next to his stack of notes.

I know...heaven, right?

But things are different now. At 46 and coming to the realization that the majority of my working life is just about behind me, I see the writing as something that I simply must do. My defenition of success is not about publication, book contracts, or even a well-traveled blog. It's more about just getting to the next page.

It's similar to our walk in life, is it not? We come to appreciate each day as if it were our first. Even if we are rushed, we don't feel it in our spirit. We pause, we watch, we listen. A flock of geese, one of thousands we've seen flying overhead during our lifetime, captivates us. We find ourselves staring at our spouse as if  it were that first moment when she first caught our eye. The simple things reach out to us and pull us into the flow of living.

So it is with the writer. We find pleasure in completing the perfect sentence, even though we know it will not be perfect when we revisit it in the second draft. A new chapter sparks an excitement inside us. What will happen to our character? How can I really mess him up this time? It's a world we create, and we are mesmerized by our own ability to both create and be surprised by it.

I hope, I pray that you will never grow weary of rising in the morning. That you will look into your lover's eyes through your bifocals and hers, and still see beauty and a whole new person to explore. We're here for a short while. We may spend it writing or we may spend it fishing. I've had many a good day fishing where nary a fish has been caught. We do it for the love of the chase, the pursuit of dreams.

I know 46 isn't old by any stretch. I'm in good health (my doctor just told me I was boring), I take care of myself, so I expect I'll see another 40 years or so on this planet if The Lord remains patient with mankind that much longer. But I feel the wisdom of wonder settling in. I've learned to be happy no matter my circumstance. Do I worry? I suppose I do, a bit. But it's always laced with a fresh optimism.

So before you turn in for the night, take a moment and breath in the wonder of it all. God has given us a life, not as a boot camp for heaven, but to taste the fulness of His creation before we are forever separated from it. Good night, friends. God's blessings.

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