Photo: Jake Parolin
Word Crush Wednesday
A man’s gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men. – Proverbs 18:16
When you know you’re gifted and you spend hours perfecting your craft but no one recognizes it, the gift that once felt like a blessing can begin to feel like grievance. What you once blessed God for, you now fault Him. Frustration festers and resentment resounds steady, as a mantra. With every stroke of genius the bitterness of the echo thwarts hope. Why don’t people get it? Why aren’t they responding? I’m giving my best!
That’s the problem. You’re giving people your best but the Gift Giver gets nothing. Every person on this earth was born with a gifted purpose. Those purposes stretch from arts, inscribing, benevolence, athleticism, education, ministry and so on. They are preceded and nurtured by education and crafted by diligence. But who’s the benefactor? That’s the question fame seekers find hard to answer.
Seven years ago I started writing my first book. I know that seems like a long time to be writing a book but trust when I say some of the greatest writers have spent a lifetime writing world changing manuscripts that people believe were written on a whim at a coffee house. Writing a book is like carrying and birthing a baby. There’s constant development of ideas and characters and travail trying to find a reputable publishing house to properly present or birth it through. But, I digress. After writing the first chapter, I submitted it to a professor, some classmates and fellow writing professionals for feedback. The response was overwhelmingly great. Immediately, my ego did a bit of swelling and I began to rehearse how this book was going to be the bee’s knees. I stop writing out of purpose and plunged right into people pleasing writing. Every word began to wrap around some form of cliche and my characters transformed into these superficial celebrities in the news. In others words, I lost my savour in the presumption of fame. When I finally got a hold of myself, I’d written four chapters of crap and smut. I repented, deleted that foolishness and started over.
Prior to starting the writing, I’d dedicated my gift and the work itself to the Lord. Every word, witty phrase, well developed idea and character came right from Him. I was proud of every word and there was a constant flow of easy writing on each page. As soon as I got caught up in the opinion and praise of people, I stop relying on God to finish the work He’d started. The work became a mess and I ended up having to take some time away from it to refocus.
It’s the same with every other gifted purpose. Whether we want to believe it or not, God Himself pre-assigns every being on this earth a divine gifted purpose. He’s the grantor, the sponsor and the backer. And because He’s a gentleman, He won’t force you to honor Him with that gift. He also won’t bless something that doesn’t honor him either. You can’t expect a sponsor to continue to endorse you when the work you’re doing is contrary to their mission statement. God’s desire is to open unfathomable doors for you and to present you in places and before people you never thought would desire to be blessed by your purpose. But in order for Him to do so, you must submit your gift back to Him.