Over the past few years, especially, I've really struggled with my passion for stories. At times I have felt that it was idolatrous or in some other way damaging to my relationship with Christ. And I will be the first to admit that I have made mistakes with this love -- I have given it too much of a priority at times, have become too obsessed with it, have probably watched and read and listened to things that I shouldn't have. But God has shown me great things regarding this, and I now firmly believe that He has a plan for this gift and this passion. Who am I to tell the Creator that something is wrong with the design? Who am I to be the servant who received the one talent and -- out of fear of his Master -- went away and hid it, because he followed his own reasoning as to what would keep his Master's property safest (see Matthew 25:14-30)?
Now, please understand me: I am not glibly dismissing the issue of idolatry. That is a struggle that we all go through at times. What I am saying is that I can trust the One Who says that He "is able to keep [me] from falling" (Jude 1:24-25) and I can throw myself wholeheartedly into the talents and strengths He has given me. Will I make mistakes along the way? Sure. Will I fall into the is-it-an-idol circle again? Probably. Will God lead me down a different road someday? Maybe. But for now, I am going to pursue the dreams He has implanted in my heart, prayerfully trusting Him to reveal truth to me.
I have come to the conclusion that for now, at least, the Lord is leading me to pursue a college degree in literature, possibly even a doctorate, and eventually to become a writer. When and how that will happen, I don't know.
Hence "Towards Indecisive and Palpitating Stars." During one of the most intense times of questioning this issue, God showed me multiple glimpses of the right path to take, and one of those signs came in the form of remembering a quote from Thomas Hardy's Far from the Madding Crowd, from which comes the title of this blog:
"In her distraction, instead of advancing further she walked up and down, beating the air with her fingers, pressing on her brow, and sobbing brokenly to herself. Then she sat down on a heap of stones by the wayside to think. There she remained long. Above the dark margin of the earth appeared foreshores and promontories of coppery cloud, bounding a green and pellucid expanse in the western sky. Amaranthine glosses came over them then, and the unresting world wheeled her round to a contrasting prospect eastward, in the shape of indecisive and palpitating stars."
~ Chapter 31 ~
You might wonder what the heck that has to do with any of this, and it's difficult to explain how it helped me, since it was such an inner-heart thing, but I'll try. Basically -- and this is big -- God is showing me that it's okay to change your direction in life in order to pursue what, to you, seems like more of a "risky" and "impractical" and "daring" venture. It's okay, even, to go so far as to claim it as an unexpected dream, cliché though that is. And God has been showing me that it's okay to "not have all the answers" lined up in regards to where that new dream will take you. It's okay to be uncertain about your future -- to look out and see only "indecisive and palpitating stars." In fact, I can start looking at the uncertainty as an adventure. I can -- *hint hint* -- start a blog with only a vague plan of documenting what happens next. I can chill. I can enjoy where He has me now, "be still before Him, and wait patiently for Him." He's got me; He's got this; and I'm okay.
I may not know what God has planned (cliché, I know), but I'm going to go forth in faith, trusting Him to reveal things in His timing, and determined to follow the leading that He gives me.
Here's to the adventure!