I was hugging Husband and looking up at his face, but he wasn’t looking back at me. His eyes were trained on my desk. His eyebrows raised incredulously. “What is that?”
“Oh,” I giggled embarrassedly. “A… book.”
I blew it. I blew it intentionally, even with a six-foot-two conscience raining meaningful glances on me.
You may have guessed what I did. I read a book that wasn’t mine. A friend did loan it to me, which is kind of within my rules, but I asked her for it. That’s definitely not within my rules. What’s worse, I stayed up really late reading it. And what’s worse still is that when I finished it, I promptly went to the library to check out the second book (on CD though, this time). And I’m fairly sure I’m going to finish the series (a total of four books) before I go back to my own collection.
I’m irritated with myself. And yet I still want to finish the series. I was thinking to myself this morning, why in the world did I have such a strong desire to read this book, right now, when I’m supposed to be reading through my own collection?
The answer that I came up with—and I’m pretty sure it’s close to the mark, if not dead on—is that I wanted to read something that didn’t matter.
I don’t buy books willy-nilly. Mostly I buy books that think will have some significance for my life, books that I will want to reference later. And for that reason, I have been reading only books that matter in the last two months.
This time, I wanted something that didn’t matter. I wanted an escape.
And because I’ve come to that conclusion and I’m pretty sure it’s accurate, I realize I have some soul-searching to do. The last month and a half have been pretty stressful. But if I feel an almost overwhelming desire to escape into a novel, then I have obviously not handled the challenges gracefully. Or rather, grace-filled-ly.
I read in Matthew 17:21 just a few days ago, “… I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” Of course, Jesus isn’t giving his disciples a blank check to go spend on whatever they want, but he is saying to them, With Me, nothing I ask you to do will be impossible.
I have the Holy Spirit living inside me. Nothing God asks of me should feel impossible or drain my reserves. I shouldn’t even be using my reserves. I should be using God’s. It’s time for me to soul-search and try to relearn how to tap into God’s resources to do what He asks me to do without trying to do it myself.