May 27, 2012

adulthood

Two nights ago I watched a movie which might become one of my favorite films, There Be Dragons. I am not going to write a review of it right now, but it's been much in my thoughts. I wrote this yesterday in a postcard that I'm going to send tomorrow, but one element that stood out to me was the way one man (a priest) wrote to a childhood friend every year though that friend never wrote him back. That constancy, that individual attention, moves me. That's a "friendship" that would have seemed to have no potential - but the priest still cared enough to write.

If I haven't told you already, I'm writing another novel this summer. I'm going to aim to write the draft in July, NaNoWriMo-style. I follow this blogger on Tumblr, ES Wynn, and he mentioned a few days ago that it's hard when people treat his profession of writing as a joke or a breeze, when he writes over 2000 words a day and has published over thirty books. And I think, if I'm serious about becoming a writer, I ought to discipline myself and start producing (but not making an idol out of productivity).

Some things John Mark Reynolds has said are proving encouraging to me as I realize how afraid I am of growing up. I'm actually wearing my Wheatstone t-shirt right now; two years ago, he said he is more happy as an adult than he was as a child. He spoke of wishing there were stronger words than "I love you" to say to his wife, words he could used almost carelessly as a teenager. And in a blog post, he wrote about how undying passion is the dream of a prostitute, not a true lover. (I've tried to find the original post online, but the post I think it was part of isn't hosted online anymore. This one is kind of similar. Reynolds writes, "Love is secure enough that it need not appear passionate.") These words are hopeful to me, because some part of me believes that maturing will cheapen my experience of life and meaning, and that I'll lose wonder and romance for boredom. But that belief isn't consistent with the idea that we are growing to the full stature of Christ, and being prepared for glory: those doctrines would have that adulthood is to be desired.

Kristen reminded me last night that life isn't just about being happy. I feel sometimes as if it is, because I desire joy and fulfillment, and will sacrifice things if it will make me happier later. Well, as Chad told me once, "Joy is long-term happiness" - so it's not so bad to want to be happy. But I shouldn't act as if God owed me happiness right now (or ever?). This life is about sanctification, and service. "Just follow Me. And I can do whatever I want with you."

2 comments:

Avery said...

I really like you're thoughts on growing up. I've been thinking about that a lot this summer.

"love is secure enough that it need not appear to be passionate"

Me gusta.

K. Flewelling said...

Dear Rebecca,

I only today read the comment that you left on my blog 3 months ago. It is funny (these things, I think, are always funny), because I needed that comment today, specifically.

Last night, I went to a writing workshop on a whim, and we wrote postcards to ourselves, 10 years in the future, pretending that we were our greatest fan (a little bit of a perspective warp). Incidentally, I wrote something sort of like what you wrote to me. And so, to find that comment today, not from a pretend reader, but from an actual reader, well. Maybe you can understand why it is important.

Why do we write? So many reasons. To connect, to inspire, to be heard, to encourage, to share the things we see in case they might benefit someone else... and sometimes, I get lost with those goals. It's easy to get discouraged and imagine that my writing helps no one, helps not even me.

But these are lies.
We matter, and so do our lives, and our experiences, and however pitiful, our words, as well.

I couldn't find your tumblr, but I'm interested to follow wherever you are. Good luck with your writing discipline. Thank you for your comment.

Truly,
k