I am glad you chose to visit! My blog is a compilation of the many hats I find myself wearing. On any given day I may be an encourager, an instructor, or just a lady who is venting. You, dear reader, will probably identify with my triumphs and my tribulations! These snapshots fit into my Life Scrapbook I have named A. McInnis Artworks. I hope you will find something worth your while.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Do You Dance for the Right Audience?

I am still trying to "wrap my head around" (trite, overused phrase) the fact that this week marks the end of a 31 year career. I've been whining about this for a while. Everyone who knows me well, knows that I WANT this, yet, it's disconcerting. Maybe because all is not right with my little world or maybe it's normal to feel this way or maybe it's because change is indeed, difficult.
I am re-reading a book by Jean Fleming, Between Walden and the Whirlwind. It was a gift from former assistant pastor and longtime friend, Steve Hill. I first read it during an especially difficult whirlwind time in my family's life. It's interesting to see the items I highlighted in pink. They are just as needed now as they were then.
Fleming's premise is that while we spend many of our days trying to organize and simplify, what we really need  to do is FOCUS. And by FOCUS, I don't mean focusing on ourself or our many activities, but rather we should focus on our Audience. Audience meaning our Director....God.

She gives a wonderful example of while a ballet company dances for an audience, they actually dance for their director...their true audience. Because he was the one whom they loved, feared and wanted to please even more than the public audience. Should we do less before God?

I have spent the greater part of my almost 63 years trying to please others. And I found out a secret that I wish to impart to you. Pssttt....It hasn't worked!!! People are fickle. They are working out their own agenda...and surprise (!), it is usually focused on themselves...NOT YOU! No matter how hard you dance, they want a different step, new music, better lightling and costumes....Folks, we are dancing for the wrong audience.
Ecclesiastes 12:8-"Meaningless! Meaningless!" says the Teacher. "Everything is meaningless!" NIV (or if you like King James, "Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher; all is vanity.") Now, I know this type language is a real turn off to some, but this quote was quite a blockbuster to me (I knew it but I didn't practice it.) "When we determine our audience, we determine our reward. If we play our life to men, we receive the kinds of rewards men give; if we focus on pleasing our Father in Heaven we receive the kinds of rewards God gives," says Fleming.
Here on this earth, all these years,  I have been given all sorts of chances. Now I've been given one of retiring from the work I considered "important" all this time. All of a sudden a thought formed in my mind. I had always wanted to have a little shop, sell my art and such...but is that what God has in mind for me? Maybe so, maybe not. The constant advertising, showing my stuff online, talking about how to do things...it's exhausting. Why? I think I know...it's been done for an audience....a wide audience. BUT IS IT THE RIGHT AUDIENCE?
Heaven knows I understand the rewards of good advertising...look at Coke and McDonald's but, have I focused the advertising of my "art" on pleasing man for a buck or on God for the good I could do...should do? (I need an extra income...retirement for teachers who don't have all their years invested in the public schools is NOT lucrative.) But I think my focus has been skewed.
As I walk (limp) on my journey (as to what God has intended for me), I will share what I learn but for a different reason...Fleming says, "Decisive living requires the selective burning of bridges." "To live with firm direction requires deliberate choices." I will practice focusing on THE Director and how He wants me to dance, until it becomes a way of life, even at this stage in my living and on the stage HE has provided.

Until later,

No comments: