Here I sit in a crowded Starbucks. My son is taking his test for certification as a teacher here in PA and I decided to drive him to take the test. Starbucks is a great place to get things done, though the hustle and bustle is a little tough on the concentration. It feels in here like my brain feels most days. Conversations all over the place. The manager laments a broken machine and his inability to make certain coffee favorites. people shout their orders, the barista shouts the finished orders, as some sort of cool jazz/world music tinkles in the background and I am listening to a video besides. I’m embracing the chaos, while writing and drawing and trying to take some of the things in my head to reality, all the while overspending on expensive drinks to assuage my guilt for taking up table space for several hours.
The thing is, I was feeling thing way in my bed this morning. The following was flowing through my head. A new way to market some of my art, new ideas for art, a new creative resource, “What will I do for Sunday’s message?” and what should be the next message on my vision series at my home church? How will I book a few more dates on my two week tour to Florida in March? (“wonder how close I’ll get to Disney World and how mad would my family be if I stopped?”) Then there’s the page ideas for my next adult coloring book and how to sell the ones I already have. How many of my books should I order for my merch table and do the books I currently have fit what I do? I need to catch up my class today. Should I get the supplies today to make the three giant idols I have to make for a presentation in February? The new sketch devotional I have to finish and have printed before the March tour. What should I write to the people that faithfully follow AMOKArts and how can I upgrade this site and make it better? And that was just part of it.
What do you do when your brain is on overload? You’ll notice there is nothing on my list that is bad and most everything needs to get done. I know I sort of harp on this a little bit but it bears repeating. Ideas are gold but they don’t always show up in their time. These showed up about 4:00 a.m. I laid in bed and fought for sleep until 4:50 then I got up and got started. You might think I dug right in on my work and too often that is what I did, but this year I have made a decision. At times I fall into a habit of jumping right into projects, first thing in the morning and before I know it, the day has flown by and I haven’t done what was most important.
So when say I got started, I went to my recliner and opened my Bible. I’m on a reading plan this year. Then when I finished my devotional reading, I read a little from the book I am studying, bundled up and went on my prayer walk. I was done by 7:30 a.m. and I was ready to work. Those ideas didn’t leave me and I am in the process of getting a lot of work done. This will be a pretty productive day.
You know me, I am all about chipping away at your projects, breaking them down into manageable steps and working hard to get things done. That hasn’t changed. The only way to succeed is to do the work, but before you do the work, connect to the One who inspires and empowers the work. Keep Him first and everything else will work out. Jesus told us if we abide in Him, we will bear much fruit. He also said apart from Him we can do nothing. I have spent too many years striving in my own strength. From now on, everything starts at the source of my strength.
How about you?