I love to work

Sep 4, 2006Write!

In college, I never figured I’d be where I am today. One thing I knew when I entered and exited: I would NEVER be in business. Ever. Ever.

And here I am, working full time from home as a writer (and trying to church plant and raise kids and make dinner and do laundry). A lot of my writerly life is pure, joyful work. And much of it, to my surprise, is business-related. It surprises me that I enjoy marketing. I’m in love with budgeting. It’s all very strange, if you think about it.

As I work, I try to remember this verse: “Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve” (Colossians 3:23–24). As I write, I serve Jesus. I work for Him. Not for the recognition of men (though, I admit, I really do like praise), but for His “well done.”

When I was a stay-at-home mom, busying myself with coupon-clipping and diaper changing and story reading, I never imagined myself in this place, though I dreamed someday I’d have the opportunity to write. I truly was utterly content being home with my kids. Though I wrote when I could, I felt satisfied. I worked hard. Very hard. From dawn to night. In the evenings, I’d fall into bed, exhausted.

I still fall into bed the same way, but now my day doesn’t consist of diapers and bottles and runny noses. It is filled with words I string together like a cheerio necklace. The worry I’ve had has been that I’ve loved this word-stringing too much. And although I feel the warmth of God’s smile when I write (as I do when I read to my children or create a unique meal), I don’t want to become a workaholic.

In the throes of mommyhood, I had no idea I had these tendencies to burn the candle at both ends. I had no idea I was a workaholic. Not until I met with book deals and deadlines and interviews and marketing did I realize I’m a full-fledged work-lover. I love working!

So this year, it’s my goal to learn when to stop. To close up shop when the kids come home from school. To button down my word-fascination for the sake of my sweet family and my Lord who commands me to rest. It’s not easy. I feel like I’ve come into my own, in a sense, through this writing gig. But I want most of all to honor God, to trust Him enough to set work aside, to rest with my family and fully engage.

I fail often. I let deadlines get the best of me. I work very, very hard. But I’m learning. And that’s all the Lord asks of me now. To do my work heartily from Him. To trust Him with the results. To serve His kingdom. To wait. To stop. To listen. To move as He gives me the unction.

And lay my work at His feet.