About a month ago, my oldest son, Samuel, wrapped-up a not-so-stellar baseball season.
I think he did just fine. For the love – he’s ten.
But he thinks he did terribly and isn’t so sure he wants to play again.
Now listen . . . I am not the parent who’s going to make my kids do stuff so I can live vicariously through them. For starters, I have never played a day of baseball in my life and quite frankly, I feel like kids his age should be learning things like good sportsmanship, encouragement and the inevitable fact that sometimes you’ll win and sometimes you’ll lose. Valuable life lessons that will actually be used someday – regardless of how many home runs one scores.
But here’s the thing: Samuel shows some natural talent in baseball.
Lo and behold, the parental challenge: how much do we push because we know there’s some natural talent there and how much do we let them choose to let it go?
“It’s just not fun anymore,” he said.
And then I knew.
I may not play baseball but boy oh boy . . . do I ever know what it’s like to take the fun out of something you once loved.
When I started this blog almost eight years ago, I simply wrote whatever on earth came to mind. A few times a week, it was darn-near close to effortless to sit down and spit out a blog post or two because I wrote what was on my heart and put it out there.
I didn’t care about how many were seeing it.
I didn’t have to be sure to post it to all social media sites.
I didn’t give a second thought to my analytics and gasp . . . I still don’t know how to read all that stuff anyway.
i didn’t care who I offended by my faith or my conservative views.
I didn’t feel like I needed to worry about how many copies of my book would sell and the subsequent Bible study because I wrote in response to a pretty clear calling from God – to write and teach. In fact, in typing those two words – write and teach – my heart begins to come alive and my mind starts to create. Even without my permission.
And yet . . . I realize there’s two sides to every passion. I understand the need to promote as a writer. I don’t like it. I don’t want to do it. But if I want to keep writing with a publishing house, I have to do it.
I’m guessing you can relate to this, too. What has stolen a bit of joy from your passion?
But here’s the thing: I’ve allowed that joy to be stolen.
I’ve chosen to focus on what I don’t want to do. What I don’t like. What steals my joy in a passion I love.
Samuel has fallen prey to the same prowling lion. He’s focused on what went wrong during this baseball season. What he didn’t do well. What he didn’t enjoy.
In other words, we have both chosen to listen to the wrong voice.
So often, I forget who I’m working for and then it feels like drudgery. When I’m reminded, it doesn’t.
It really is that simple.
Now if I can get a little baseball player to see it the same way . . .
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. – Colossians 3:23-24
Natalie, thanks for your refreshing blog post…I found it encouraging in a season when I’ve spent sooooo much time finish up a long-term book project and getting the “infrastructure” ready to launch it that some days I feel in danger of losing the joy of getting to do what I love. Glad to know I’m not the only one! (and hope your little guy is able to enjoy baseball again soon too) :D
Thanks, Kim! I know what you mean – that’s exactly where I’ve been too! Good luck on your book release! It’s like birthing a child! :)