Recently a friend and I walked on a beach in Oregon. All around us were countless treasures the tide had brought in and deposited in the sand. Rocks, shells, driftwood…so many beautiful, intriguing items to pick up and examine. I’ve always been a gatherer when I’m on the beach, collecting items to take home and put in my garden, remembrances of my visits. But my friend? She picked up as many treasures as I, inspected and commented on the beauty of each, but rather than drop them into a pocket or bag, she put most of them back on the beach. I finally asked her why. After all, many of the things she’d picked up and shown me were beautiful.
She nodded. “They are beautiful, but they’re not the one.”
I frowned. “The one?”
“I’ve got limited space, both now in my bag and also in my luggage when I fly home. So I’m waiting to find the perfect one to take with me.”
It made sense. And for her then and, I realized, for many of us in our writing careers. There are so many things we can do as writers. So many opportunities and possibilities. And while that’s a good thing, it can, if we’re not careful, become a problem. Because if we take on too many opportunities that seem good, we may not have the time or creativity when something perfect comes along.
So let me encourage you, as you consider where to invest your time and talent as a writer, keep in mind how much you need to keep in reserve for “the perfect one.” I understand doing what’s necessary to make a living, but don’t let that focus cause you to forget that God has a purpose for you in this task. He made you a writer for a reason. Know that reason. Know what His “perfect one” is for you, and watch for it. Stay tuned in to it. And be sure that what you do resonates with the heart of His perfect reason for making you a writer.
Waiting for perfect isn’t easy. But I guarantee you, it’s worth it.