“And we being exceedingly tossed with a tempest, the next day they lightened the ship; And the third day we cast out with our own hands the tackling of the ship.” — Acts 27:18-19
Emotional baggage can be just as damaging to the pursuit of a dream as can material baggage.
Material baggage, the preoccupation with the accumulation of things you don’t need to impress people you don’t particularly care about, can easily derail your intentions, getting your eyes off the prize and on to something frivolous. Before you know it, you’ve whittled your precious time away on a wild goose chase. This is any easy one to spot, not only because it is so commonplace, but because the signs are so crystal clear.
The emotional side of the pond, however, is very muddy.
My very first step in rededicating myself to God and to becoming a writer was to take notice of the things to which I was emotionally attached. At first it was easy. Anything getting in my way of these two things had to be pushed aside. But soon, I felt that all I had done was thrown my luggage overboard and burned my bridges, effectively alienating myself from a world that still held the resources I needed. I muddled through the best I could. “God doesn’t want you to just muddle through.” was the prominent, recurring message at church. “He wants to give you everything.” I told myself and others this repeatedly, and yet it seemed so distant and unreal.
But recently, I’ve realized something.
Man, even when he knows he isn’t, retains this unconscious delusion that he is in full control of his life. This is a fallacy. No matter how often I’ve grasped at control over my own fate, life took it from me and had its own ideas about where I should go and what I should do. But then, I noticed that though I said I trusted God with all my heart, I didn’t live my life like I trusted Him. If I did, why would I still be holding on to pain, hurtful memories, pride, and conforming to the opinions of others? These things are usually regarded as the road map and compass of life, and to the world, giving them up means careening out of control and into disaster. But what good did a road map and compass do for me, I asked myself, besides lead me straight into trouble and dramatic conflict? I can’t do this on my own, I decided.
I’m ready to get out of the storm and see where I end up with more capable hands at the helm.
So many people blame God for their problems and their personal storms, and yet they never let God fully move through their lives to begin with. Trust in God is not something that you can just sample like a cable subscription. You either step out and receive everything he has, or you don’t. Personally, I’m going to trust Him completely, and I believe that everything, including my quest to become a published author, is guaranteed to fall into place in due time.