Conversations with God

CHILL OUT.

I glanced up. Everyone had their heads bowed and their eyes closed. I shut mine and tilted my head forward.

What was that, God?

I SAID, CHILL OUT. YOU ARE TRYING TOO HARD.

My eyebrows went up. Trying too hard at…?

EVERYTHING. YOU DON’T HAVE TO IMPRESS ME. I CREATED YOU, REMEMBER? NOT ONLY DID I KNOW YOU BEFORE YOU WERE BORN, I KNEW EVERYTHING YOU WOULD EVER DO – INCLUDING THE FACT THAT WE WOULD BE HAVING THIS CONVERSATION.

… awkward.

I don’t understand. Could you be more specific?

OKAY, WELL, WHERE SHALL WE START? HOW ABOUT YOUR PROJECT? HOW ARE YOU FEELING ABOUT IT?

Truthfully, I am stressing about it.

WHY?

Because I have so much to do and so little time!

WHAT’S WRONG WITH THE FIRST DRAFT?

Well, it was written ten years ago!

AND… IT WASN’T GOOD THEN?

It was, of course it was!

… SO…?

Oh. So you want me to stop rewriting it?

YES.

But why?

BECAUSE IT IS GOOD ENOUGH NOW, IT DOESN’T NEED YOU TO CLOG IT UP WITH ‘EXTRA MATERIAL.’ I WANT THIS PROJECT TO GIVE YOU JOY AND BRING YOU CLOSER TO ME, NOT MAKE YOU TOSS AND TURN AND TEAR YOUR HAIR OUT BY THE ROOTS.

Oh, well… okay.

I smiled.

YOU FEEL BETTER ALREADY, DON’T YOU? RELIEVED? HAPPY? EXCITED?

Yes.

GOOD. LET’S MOVE ON.

Uh oh. What else am I trying too hard at?

FEMNISTA. I LIKE IT HOW IT IS. YOU ARE REACHING PEOPLE YOU WOULDN’T IF YOU GOT TOO ‘PREACHY.’ JUST BECAUSE I SAID I WANTED YOU TO ‘DIG DEEPER’ DIDN’T MEAN I WANTED YOU TO THINK YOU HAD TO CHANGE EVERYTHING!

So… leave it like it is?

FOR THE MOST PART, YES; ENCOURAGE YOUR WRITERS. SUPPORT THEM. IF I WANT TO SAY SOMETHING THROUGH THEM, I WILL. NONE OF THEM, OR YOU, HAVE TO FORCE IT.

Okay… um… is that all?

NOPE.

Really?!? Because I’m feeling kind of ganged up on here!

YOU NOTICED THAT I ‘GREW YOU UP’ A LOT LAST SUMMER AND HAVE BEEN TRYING TO DO THE REST ON YOUR OWN. CUT IT OUT. THAT’S MY JOB. YOU JUST CALM DOWN AND CONTINUE TO WORK ON THAT PERFECTIONIST STUFF WE HAVE DISCUSSED MANY TIMES AND LET ME GROW YOU UP MORE AT YOUR OWN SPEED, OKAY?

So… this doesn’t mean I need to pack away some of my stuff?

NO. WE’RE GOOD. I LIKE IT THAT YOU’RE TRYING. BUT LET ME DO MOST OF THE HARD WORK.

The music was starting; prayer time was over and it was time to head to my Sunday school class. Is that all, LORD?

WHAT, YOU THINK I’M NOT GOING WITH YOU?

Oh, right…

8 Replies to “Conversations with God”

  1. Awesome post, it made me smile. Love the honesty, thanks for sharing! Like you I wish I could just shut my brain off…it tends to go into overdrive at the least provocation. *sigh* 😛

  2. Don’t you love when God is confrontational? 😉
    Great post, Charity. I struggle with perfectionism too, and I hope that we both take God’s advice to chill, lol.
    Seriously, what I’ve seen of your writing is amazing (at least here at your blog and in the magazine), and no matter what direction you take with Femnista, I know it will be the right one. You’re doing great. I love to see the effort you put into this project, and I pray that God will continue to guide you and give you wisdom and less stress as He lives live *with* you, alongside you.

    ~ Hannah K.

    1. Oh, yes. I look forward to it. It’s really marvelous to be smacked with a spiritual 2×4 at church. In fact, it is becoming an all too frequent event — where do I resign? 😉

      I’m starting to think I should print CHILL OUT and post it on the wall above my computer. I waaaaaayyy over-analyze everything, knowing full well it can’t be perfect, yet I still try.

      Well, thank you. That’s very kind and gives me a little boost of confidence. I’m by far my harshest critic. In some ways it has made me improve tremendously, and in some other ways it… annoys me.

      Whatever happens with Femnista — it’s God’s project. We’ll just do our best and let Him deal with the consequences. =)

  3. Humorous post, Charity. =)

    I hope that you learn to “let go” some of the things that have you so stressed out. I can be kind of a perfectionist when it comes to my writing, too. Often times, I push myself to do better and I then, I tend to be really “nervous” about how it will turn out BUT I also know that if I don’t try my hardest, it means my blog post, Femnista article or review will not be as good as it could be.

    Regarding Femnista, here are my “two cents”: I think it has reached a place where it is really good. Being the editor, I can see where you’d want to further its potential, but as a writer, I am really pleased at its transformation. Thank YOU for all your hard work and dedication in seeing that it reaches as wide an audience as it can. =) Know that all you have done for it (and for how you’ve helped my writing personally) is greatly appreciated.

    1. Pushing oneself is one thing; it’s good. But when one attempts so hard to become perfect that they think even their best work is rubbish, that’s not good! Unfortunately, it’s an inborn characteristic of my personality type — in addition to boredom, over-analyzing everything, and so forth. I told my brother yesterday on the way home from church, “I wish my brain would shut off — I’m sick of it.” =D

      I agree with your thoughts on the webzine; I think it’s really quite good, and continually improving. My writers are stretching to new heights and I’m quite proud of you all. I’m grateful for your contributions.

      1. Perfection is not achievable in humans, but unfortunately, I think we forget that no matter how hard we may try, our talents could also be “better” if we work at it. Still, I go through times were I am fully aware of this, and I do “chill out” and others when I really need to. ;D

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