One of the drawbacks of working in a creative field is that I often come up with more ideas than I can possibly execute—at least not with excellence if I’m rushing to do a lot of things in a short time. It can be difficult to settle down and focus on one project when there are other possibilities jumping around in my brain and vying for my attention. So then I think, “Which of these projects would really please other people? Which ones would impress them or inspire them or help them?” And then I get overwhelmed again because I don’t always know the answers to those questions so I feel like I should do everything just to cover all my bases, even the not-so-great ideas.
This is insanity. I’m not calling anyone else insane, but I suspect I’m not alone in grappling with these types of questions. Especially around the holidays, even the calmest people can feel stressed as they try to figure out what gifts to shop for, what social events to attend, who to send cards to, how to manage extra housework and cooking before family members and friends visit, and so on. We lose sight of why we even have this thing we call Christmas.
A lot of us suffer from FOMO (the Fear of Missing Out), but God didn’t design us to be frantic circus performers, juggling ten balls in the air while trying to stay upright on a unicycle! So how do we know what we’re supposed to be doing? How do we maintain our serenity and keep overwhelm from stealing our joy?
I recently remembered something I heard Phil Vischer (the creator of VeggieTales) say at a conference many years ago: “The impact we have for God doesn’t come when we pursue impact, but when we pursue God.” Wow. That really spoke to me. It reminded me that I can be too worried about the outcome of my efforts and whether or not people will praise me for what I do. Instead, I should be pursuing deeper intimacy with my Creator who loves me—without worrying about where He’s leading me or what kind of impact my life will have on others.
*deep breath* There. That's better. :)
What are you pursuing? Will it get you to where you want to end up?
MOVIE: I cancelled my Netflix subscription several months ago, but when I heard that Brooke Shields and Cary Elwes were starring together in a Christmas movie set in a Scottish castle, I could not resist reactivating my account. If you need a break from sugary sweet predictable Hallmark movies, check out A Castle for Christmas. Okay, so it's a bit predictable, too, but also funny. And, I mean. . . CARY ELWES. (And all The Princess Bride fans replied: "As you wish.") ;)