Tuesday, December 27, 2005

The Ripple Effect

I turn 38 on New Year's Day.

Three. Eight. Perhaps it's time to grow up.

Maybe it's due to my reading so many good authors, but instead of being inspired by them, I feel so small. Tiny. Inadequate. And am thinking that my aspirations of being an author are perhaps something best left behind to childhood and childish pride. It's time to face facts that I don't have what it takes to write, at least not as I'd like to, and that perhaps God is calling me to other things. I've been trying to write this blasted book for over three years now and am getting no closer to finishing it then I was then.

I had mentioned that this year's viewing of It's A Wonderful Life left me feeling odd. Like George Bailey I come from a small town and dreamt of big things. But as he came to find out he had affected so many lives for the better LOCALLY by staying home and doing the little things well day in and day out. By living a life of integrity. I do neither at times. Perhaps my own "Clarence" is telling me that it's time to stay "local" and focus on things here: with my wife, my children, my friends, my community.

Of course, George Bailey's life had ripple effects that extended outwards to people he didn't know due to the way he lived his life at home, but why can't all of ours do that? I believe that they do, even without our knowing it.

St. Paul said in his great epistle on charity (love) in 1 Corinthians 13:11 that "When I was a child, I used to talk as a child, think as a child, reason as a child; when I became a man, I put aside childish things." While my first inclination is to say that this contradicts Jesus' telling us to remain as children and have faith as children do, I think it's actually two different things. For while I still retain my child-like faith in Christ, it is also time to reach a maturity in other matters that are only serving as roadblocks to that faith.

As Clarence wrote in his copy of Tom Sawyer and gave to George at the end of the movie: "Remember, no man is a failure who has friends." In this regard I will never consider myself a failure as I am blessed to have so many wonderful friends at home and abroad. I don't need to be published to succeed. I'm already a success, and I owe that success to God...and my friends.


At 12:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Thirty-eight.. I will be a most astounding Fifty-Four in a matter of hours from now, and my extent of grown-upness is to not guffaw at chipmunks anymore, but rather to keep quieter the chuckle at God's wondrously funny little creations. If I had your natural, hilarious and interesting grasp on writing, I'd be putting out books as if it were free.


I have read thousands of books, so please hear this: You DO have what it takes.

You can have all else besides, but you're writing for two for now -- you, and little J, right? He will take that book off his shelf to show his son someday...

Go for it!



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