2017: Page 208

After six days away from home keeping up with travel and a conference schedule, page 208 began slowly.  I was awake early but went back to sleep and managed to sleep in for a little while before heading to work.  My plan was to unload my truck, which still contained my display and conference materials, and then get started on the mowing.  I managed to get the truck unloaded and began to go through my mail, email, and messages to see if there were things I needed to respond to or take care of.  There were a few things to take note of, but nothing pressing, so I continued putting away and reorganizing the materials I had brought back from the conference.  

As I worked, I noticed a cardinal posing in the brush outside my window.  As I got my camera out to photograph him, I noticed that everything outside was wet and a light rain was falling.  I’m not a big fan of mowing wet grass, or especially not in the rain if I can avoid it, so I continued to put away the things I had unloaded from my truck.  Once I had found a somewhat out of the way place in my office for everything, I turned my attention to drawing into a quiet time with God to consider the if and what He might have me focus on for my next writing assignment.  The seeds for another devotional journal book had been planted in my mind at the conference, so I spent some time dwelling on those thoughts to see if greater clarity would come to them.  I eventually came up with a potential title, subtitle, and a short description.  As I allowed my mind to dwell on those things, it wasn’t long before a cover idea filled my mind . . . and as it turned out, I have a recent photo that fits that idea.  

If I were to listen to professional advice and opinions on how to write, I would discover that I pretty much do it all backwards and wrong.  The idea generally comes first, but a close second is the book’s cover.  Most of what I read tells me that the cover, and even the title, is the last thing to do — you have to finish the writing of the book and then let the cover and title develop out of what has been written.   For me, the title is usually first and sometimes I take a photo that I almost instantly know will be a book cover so the title and content eventually follow.  After I finished the first draft of the book’s cover, I sat down with God and His Word and began to work on the skeleton of the book so the devotional pages will have a structure to hang on.

It didn’t seem long until I looked up and realized it was mid-afternoon and I was hungry.  The rain had stopped, but it was late enough that I began packing up for the day so I could go get lunch.  As I was ready to shut down my computer, I noticed a mama and baby deer in the woods outside my office window.  It didn’t take long to decide lunch could wait a few more minutes as I took some photographs.  After lunch I headed home to rest a while and sat on the porch with my camera waiting and watching for the hummingbirds to show up.  I eventually had a few stop by and today’s photo is one of them drinking deeply from the feeder.  How often do you and I so long to be filled that we bury our head in the pages and drink deeply from God’s Word?  Eventually I took a break from photographing hummingbirds to get the pellet grill started and make some bacon cheeseburgers for dinner.  After dinner I began work on writing today’s page which I will soon finish so I can head to bed earlier than I have for quite some time.

As I reflect on the day, here are some thoughts/lessons that stand out to me:

  • Rest is not just a good idea, it is God’s idea.
  • It is important to know the difference between when we have to keep going with perseverance, and when we need to step back and rest.
  • Just because we’re tired doesn’t mean it is time to rest.  Sometimes God calls us to press on through the weariness and allow Him to provide the necessary rest in due season.
  • Sometimes it is necessary to work through adverse conditions and sometimes it is more beneficial to wait.  Knowing which time it is that you face requires wisdom.
  • We can learn much from others in regard to how to do things most effectively and efficiently.
  • Imitating what works for someone else may work for us, and it may not.
  • We are each unique creations of God and recognizing that my mind captures and processes things differently, helps me to be okay with doing things in a different manner than most others.
  • The more fully we rest in God’s presence, the more deeply we are able to drink from His Word.

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