I heard somewhere that November is National Blog-a-day Month. I heard it, so it must be true.
In past years, I’ve used this month for different things: to get out of a non-blogging rut, to jump start a gratitude journal, to post pictures of kids. I don’t have a real goal this time — I just want to do a post a day.
I should be waxing poetic. This weekend was homecoming at Harding and at our church. I was able to see people I haven’t seen in a few years and I was able to sing beautiful songs at the reunion for our choral group. I talked to my friend Paul who is struggling with Lou Gehrig’s disease; it was good to hear his voice. I was able to hug one of my mom’s friends who recently lost her husband. I should be full of nostalgia and good memories; instead, I’m just kind of here.
Do you know what I don’t want to be? I don’t want to be a person who says everything is OK when it’s not. I don’t want to come across to others as someone who always has it together because, trust me, I do not. I’m a person who tries to look for good in everything, but who doesn’t know where the line is between looking for good and overlooking problems. I’m overly critical of the people who mean the most to me. My house is a mess, I don’t like house pets, and most days I’d rather listen to 80’s rock than praise and worship music.
Recently I was able to meet an award-winning author of Christian Fiction, who just happens to be a graduate of Harding. It made me wonder if there would ever be a character that resembled me in a Christian Fiction book. If so, how would she be portrayed?
- A wife and mom, struggling to find balance between work and home, never feeling like she can give enough in either place.
- A chronic overeater. Face it — if I were an alcoholic, I would’ve been drunk for the last two weeks.
- Someone who wants to be calm and serene, but who yells when she comes home and finds dishes in the sink.
- Someone who doesn’t want to be materialistic, but who desperately wants a new car instead of the ‘good enough’ van that makes weird noises and has a dent in the front.
- A woman with aspirations of being Maria von Trapp, making jumpers and packing picnic lunches, but who winds up saying Let’s watch Hairspray and eat chips with rotel for supper. Rotel counts as a vegetable, right?
- And — of course — on bad days, she is tempted to run away and be a roadie for U2.
So there’s my character in a Christian Fiction novel. She’s not a schoolteacher out west or Amish, or a youngish person looking for a husband. She is — OK, I admit it — middle-aged and sorting through the daily grind of a life that’s very consuming.
Like me. Like most of my friends. We’re too old to fall for the if-you-do-the-right-things-then-good-things-will-happen rhetoric, but we still hold desperately to our relationship with Jesus to make some sense of it all. Not pulled together, but held together by the grace of God.