I'm inspired by Lisa-Jo's post, "What Can You Write in Five Minutes Flat?" from a couple of days ago.
Pasta is boiling on the stove right now, so let's see how I do...
I'm definitely not a throw-it-out-there in five minutes kinda girl. No, I tend to write over several hours & days...composing paragraphs while in the shower, reformating lines in my mind as I chauffer the kids to choir & guitar, mentally running thru creative synonyms for the word 'great' as I chop carrots. Writing happens while I'm out in the woods, looking up to the clear-blue Colorado sky, snow crunching underfoot, breathing clouds into the rarifed mountain air, arms raised to God, asking Him to speak Light, to pour Wisdom over my world-saturated-Spirit-starved heart.
And there - that's five minutes...
I didn't get very far. I'm too wordy, I guess. I talk too much in person, too. When telling Kevin about my day, I can wax eloquent about one moment in time for half an hour. Over the years he has graciously learned to not roll his eyes, look at his watch, or interrupt in exasperation, "so, what happened?" 'Course I've also learned to recognize the eyes-glazed-over signs of checking out, and know how to cut to the chase: "no one got hurt; the side of the van is dented; we need to clean the vomit out of the car seat."
To tell the truth, I don't get very far into typing before I'm re-reading, deleting, modifying, starting over. My husband is the total opposite: he'll spend 20 minutes at the computer and spit out a blog post, a promotion, and 14 email replies. Then again, his output is often sprinkled with typos & grammatical errors, despite the wise, funny, compelling content. He doesn't mind tho. Just laughs it off, and only sometimes goes back to make corrections. And it's not like I'm a perfectionist; far from it! Step into my lumpy-bumpy, creatively-ecclectic straw-bale home and you'll know.
But with communication, with words, I like to be careful. According to the Five Love Languages, words are top priority for me, giving and receiving. I spent years without realizing this, spewing impatient words, angry words, critical words...and God is helping me ever-so-gradually, to understand the power of my words. Simply speaking is easier tho, cause even my poorly-phrased annunciations pass quickly into thin air, and are forgotten. Hurtful words have the power of death, yes...but it is ever so much easier to forgive spoken words that diminish with the passage of time...than written words that are forever embedded in black and white.
So I think, for most of us, to craft thoughts & feelings & growth-groanings into something moderately expressive, takes time.
And yet - as I write, and think, and pray & ponder -
On a bigger scale -
It occurs to me that perhaps everything in my life doesn't have to be such a big production.
Lunch for my family doesn't have to be the gourmet spread I pressure myself to provide.
Every infraction by the kids doesn't have to be a major deal.
Coughing baby in the night can be a hiccup instead of a catastrophe of sleep-deprivation.
I don't have to shower & get all dressed up just to go pick up the kids; that's what a ball-cap is for!
Every little disagrement with Kevin doesn't need to be a mountain.
I don't have to have an hour to go hike in the woods and seek the Lord; ten minutes can be glorious.
A few words, a five-minute blog-on-the-fly, is just fine.
Don't ruin good with perfect. We say that alot around here. 'Cause more often than not, when I fret over perfect, I don't get even get around to good. Now I gotta learn how to apply it to my litle blog efforts. I don't have to ruin a perfectly good bit of blogging-on-the-fly by a bazillion rewrites to get it all polished & perfect. (Even as I enviously grumble to myself that some people seem to type all polished & perfect right outta the chute....) No matter; my own egotistical comparisons are not my measuring stick.
May the words of my mouth and hte meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer. - Psalm 19:14
Oh, Abba! That I would strive only to shine the little light you've placed me; to please You alone with my wandering words!
So five minutes here...five minutes there...I've done it, in my own stumbling way, Lisa-Jo.
And I think I'm starting to understand.
There are more important things to do than fret about perfection.
As I sit here and reread and resist the temptation to rewrite...I feel Him smiling, can almost hear His amused laughter, "you're learning, my girl; you're getting there!"