Monday, April 5, 2010

One Word Past My Own...

Today I don’t want to write. I’m tired, and I look backwards at all the pages and hours and drafts and semesters, and I wonder, isn’t that enough? Can’t I quit now?

But now is when I have to write. I have to keep going, because it’s after this moment when my words might take on something more than I can give. When I’ve written every sentence I know to write and then I write some more—well God must surely indwell within some of them.

It’s easy to start something. Raw energy, new material, fresh perspective. It’s not always easy to finish, to run mile 25 and 26 when you’re already covered in sweat and your feet ache and you think, “Hey I’ve run 24 more miles than most other people I know.”

Right now I’m staring at a finish line. My diploma is waiting at the end of this season’s race. And I’m going to make it. The question is, will I walk or will I run to claim it? I’m close enough I could slack off, slow down, give just enough to walk across the line and get my finisher’s medal, but what about finishing strong? What about pushing through the pain and running, teeth gritted, head thrown back, heart pumping till it might break out of my chest, full-on run. That’s what I envisioned at the beginning of this semester. I still want it now. But there are a million small moments in the next thirty days when I’m going to have to choose to keep going. And the first one is right now.

I know it’s worth it. I have so many good reasons to talk myself into just finishing. I have no excuse not to finish reworking another draft on my final manuscript other than the fact that I don’t want to. Sometimes it’s painful to rip something apart that you’ve already accomplished, to admit there are flaws, and to believe in the process strong enough to undergo the pain of surgery and correction. And it takes energy and time, when honestly I’d rather go to sleep or turn on a movie… anything that takes less work.

But I can’t. That’s the only answer I have. There’s too much at stake. I’ve worked too hard and come too close to give up now. And there’s something beautiful to be said about finding a nook of beauty beyond myself, of discovering God writing something within that I did not know existed, at coming to the end of my strength and finding God has the muscles of heaven willing to carry me if only I’m willing to take one more step.

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