James of the New Testament says, "What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes."I can identify with that, because right now my life seems to be flying at warp speed and I do feel a bit "misty" about that. Writing to the newly converted Jew, James writes about practical Christianity. But like the rest of God's word, the messages James writes apply equally well today.
As writers, we set goals, make commitments, and accept assignments with deadlines. That is the nature of our work, but some things always, at least often, attempt to throw us off our course. Right now I am going through one of these periods when there are time demands on many fronts.
Commitments have been made, so I will have to juggle my priorities again and maybe gear down on my expectations of what I can do or how well I can do it. Perfections is my old nemesis. Our friend's family history may not read like a Dicken's novel, but it will get done. I will attend my husband's medical appointments. When the kids and grandkids arrive shortly, accomodation and meals will be less than standards at The Ritz, but there will be plenty to eat. I may only get one entry ready for the Inscribe Fall Contest, but one is better than none.
Yes, I'll be short on attaining all my goals and some may be done to a lesser standard, but I will do my best. I will pray for peace of mind, patience, and understanding--of others, even of myself. Thankfully, the love I feel for my family will never be in short supply.
I may be a mist passing briefly through this life, but I still need to do the best I can with the time and talents I have. Crises of time remind me what matters most.
James addresses all Christians when he says, "Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money." To that he adds, "Why, you don't even know what will happen tomorrow." I agree with James totally, but that doesn't excuse me from procrastinating, getting side-tracked, being undisciplined, or wasting precious moments while the mist that is my life evaporates.
If I didn't feel called and gifted to write, I would have given this up long ago. I am passionate about my faith and I try to live as God calls me to live. Through my human frailty, I learn. I grow. If I openly and honestly share my experience with others when I write, I may help them to see how God cares for all of us and watches over us.
When rushed and stressed by pressures, I do more foolish things than normal. Recently I lost my glasses when we were hurrying to an appointment. I thought I had left them at home, but they weren't there. I returned to where we had parked our vehicle in case my specs had fallen off my lap. They weren't there either.
I prayed about it. I asked St. Anthony, patron saint of lost things, to help me find my specs. Next morning, I went back to the spot once more, and there, sparkling with dew were my expensive, trifocal glasses that I really need. I offered a grateful prayer of thanks and praise.
If God calls me to share my experiences with others, I will do that. Speaking of practical Christianity,
James says, "Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins."
Instead of boasting about the goals I will accomplish next month or next year, I will remind myself of James's admonition to say, "If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that." Putting this verse in writer-ease, I will say, "If it is the Lord's will, I will get this or that written, this or that published."
David the Psalmist said, "The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me; . . . do not abandon the work of my hands."
Readings from James 4:13 -- 17 and Psalm 138.8