Tuesday, 6 November 2012

It's not about me

Well, Lord, we've reached another round number.

I have been coming here and chatting to you as my fingers taptaptap on the computer keys for nearly two years, and I have pressed 'Publish' three hundred times.

Actually, many more than three hundred times as I quite often press 'publish' and then 'edit' and then 'publish' again. And then there've been the times when I've inadvertently pressed 'publish' and then had to scrabble about attempting to retrieve technologically a pageful of notes to myself...but what I'm getting at is: there are three hundred posts.

Three hundred conversations. Three hundred moans, giggles, rants, triumphs or sobs. And every hundred I remind myself that it isn't about me.

It's Not About Me. No, it isn't.

I love to write, Father God; you put the longing in me. All my life I've written things, from diaries (can't bring myself to destroy them but their existence makes me cringe) to poems and short stories to lengthy and self-conscious attempts at novels that didn't go anywhere. I always wanted to write but could never quite get anywhere with my writing. Teachers encouraged, friends were kind, but the purpose was just never there. Ideas never translated into anything real; it never felt sustainable. And then about three years ago someone from church told me that they enjoyed the prayers that I wrote for the family service intercession and maybe I should write them down.

After that some other people said the same, and someone suggested I should start a blog. I had to google 'blog'. Being me, I thought about that for a few months, started one in September that year and didn't write a word in it until January the following year. And then I found that I couldn't stop.

That was three hundred posts ago, and I know that the words don't come from me. I'm not suggesting that I speak with your voice, or have any sort of inspired wisdom or anything, but I do know that this is a place that you and I come to chat and you are the wind in my sails, so to speak. I know that you sit next to me as I write and I know that you help me get the mess that's in my head down onto paper (so to speak). Time and time again I find that I start out feeling one way and by the time I finish chatting to you I feel different. I ask a question only to find the answer. I have a cry, and I find your comfort. I complain and you point out blessings.  I praise you, and I feel your pleasure.

I think that you like to meet me here just as much (if not more) than I like to come. I suspect that in many other ways you struggle to get my attention. But this... I want to communicate with people. I want to encourage and inspire. I want to notice you around me every day, in the extraordinary and the ordinary. I don't want to miss a single thing.

You have given me a brain that thinks in pictures and likes to play with ideas. You've given me the ability to witter on endlessly and arrange and rearrange words and I have a computer and a little place perched in the kitchen where I can come and chat to you while the children rollerskate round me, or while the kettle boils, or the chilli bubbles and becomes spot-welded to the bottom of the pan.

I have everything that I need.

It's not about me.

Lord God, it's about you. It's all about you. About knowing you better, about showing where you are to people who don't know where to find you, about bringing you glory. It's about using the gifts that you've given me so that they grow and develop and don't just sit there gathering dust. It's about doing as I'm told.

It's a hard thing to say, 'I think I'm good at this' because I leave myself open to people who might say, 'I think you flatter yourself.'  Some days I think I can do it, some days I wonder why I bother. Some days I think I'm one of the servants with a whole bagful of talents - the world is my lobster! -  and the next I'm convinced that I should run away and bury what little pathetic thing I have because I don't want to show it to anyone for fear of ridicule or contempt.

When I look to left and right at all the wonderfully skilled and talented people there are out there with God-given inspiration and ability I become distracted and discouraged. If it's all been said before and so much better than I could say it, where's the point? But you tell me not to compare myself.

'So what if they have a prodigious talent and a million followers? You do your thing. Let them do theirs'.  There are many different jobs in your Kingdom. Nobody does the same as anyone else.

It's when I keep my eyes focused on you that it all works best. When I do that it all flows. It's the most natural, effortless thing in the world. It's a source of joy and relief and comfort for which I can never, ever thank you.

I write because it helps me come into your presence and not to get sidetracked. I write because it helps me think and work through the muddle that's in my head. I write because I want to tell the world that you are my God and I love you. I write because you showed me how and because you want me to.

It's not about me. It's all about you.

Forgive me, Father, for the times that I get that the wrong way round. When I get self-indulgent and self-absorbed. For the times when you can't get a word in edgeways and you're just waiting for me to stop banging on long enough to tell me 'It's alright', or 'It's not like that', or 'Will you just pull yourself together?'

Forgive me for the times when I get a little bit too pleased with myself, or a bit too absorbed with the statistics. For the times when I focus too much on what other people think and long for approval from them rather than you. I play to an audience of One.

This place is a part of me, now. I would miss it immeasurably if I couldn't come here any more. I realise that it's become something so special to me; a place to talk and, yes, to listen; to explore and learn and grow.

It's all for you, Father. It always will be.


  1. Amen, Sister. It is all for Him and he has given you a beautiful gift that you gracefully share with us, so that we might say "me too!"....I'm not the only one. So that you might inspire and encourage, challenge and enlighten. Bless you and here's to the next 300 posts! Cheers :-)

  2. He hears your heart and so do we and it's beautiful x Because HE makes all things beautiful.

    PS I so love the words that you cannot bring yourself to destroy your diaries and yet their existance makes you cringe ... lol .... me too ... God laughs at us!

    1. Thankyou thankyou.
      I hope that it makes Him smile. :-)

  3. Amen Helen, the fact that you are so self aware speaks volumes, again I nod in agreement re. so many things you have said and am reminded that we are only fingers, toes, limbs, eyes, bones etc that makes up the fullness of the Body of Messiah xxx

    1. Thanks Florence, for your kind words.

  4. Awesome, Helen. I too love to write. Bless those people at your church who encouraged you to get your prayers written down. Some people just have a gift of communicating with the written word. It's powerful. Blessings, Amy

    1. Thanks Amy. I am so grateful to those people because I love being here and I don't know what I would do without this place that I come to unload and recharge and be me. And when someone reads it and says that it spoke to them then i smile all day. Thankyou for your encouragement.


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