Saturday, February 18, 2012

This blog has become one of my many projects left untouched in the past year. Turning 50 wasn't as upsetting as the passing of the previous decade, but a discouraging reminder that there are so many things in life I haven't accomplished. It isn't that I haven't had any good intentions or interesting inspirations, but my enthusiasm has waned. I am once again in a creative writing critque class and have dusted off a few old manuscripts for editing and submission. Hopefully the next decade will be more productive.

I owe a deep expression of gratitude to wise author who recently sent me on a mission when I related my list of "woes" relating to pursuing a career in creative writing. She sent me out into the publishing world in pursuit of rejection. She advised me to "get back in the saddle" and submit, submit, submit. Initially, my pursuit has been successful and I have a new rejection letter to add to my small collection. I was surprised that even though I knew the publication was probably out of my league as an unpublished author, the rejection email still sent me into the emotional dumpster. However, I have made progress. I only wasted one afternoon indulging in lethargic self pity: two episodes of Crimminal Minds and few Snickers were all the wallowing I needed. I think that's progress. I will most likely submit again.

Rejection, failure, lost dreams -- all of them are tough to take. We spent the last two days at the State High School Swim Meet. My son made it to the preliminary round, which is an achievement, but was sick the entire week before, and although he swam his best time ever in backstroke, he did not qualify to swim in the finals. He was the first alternate, and his preliminary time would have been the 14th best in the final round. But "would haves" don't count in sports, or publishing or anything of importance.

Even though I know these set backs are an important part of the learning process for both of us, watching Peter struggle through the disappointment is difficult for me. No one said the journey to achievement would be easy. This semester in our scripture study group we are studying the Book of Revelation. Not to be disrespectful to the sacred scripture, but it isn't my favorite. I find the imagery hard to digest. The author of the study stated that the book reveals our final exodus to the Promised Land. I like that concept and find it easier to relate to the text when I think of it that way.

Plagues, hardships, repentence are all part of the journey.Small disappointments like rejection letters and poor qualifying times seem insignificant in comparison, but the manner in which we view and regard these small losses will prepare us for the larger ones in the future.

Ash Wednesday approaches and contemplating what I should sacrifice for the journey leads me to self examination. Do I believe that all these obstacles are in God's hands, and that He has a greater good in store for me? Am I consistently grateful for my blessings, even when my hopes aren't met? Do my circumstances determine how I feel about God, or do I strive to love Him with all my heart, all my mind, all my soul and all my strength no matter what?

I am truly blest to have some many good examples of people who exemply faithfulness in their everyday lives. I hope as part of my lenten journery to share them through the blog. And yes, I may give up watching Crimminal Minds and eating Snickers as well.

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