Apr 22, 2006

Desires, and saying Yes

"If in your heart you’ve wanted it, then God put that desire there, and He intends to fulfill it."

I’ve heard people tell me that over the years, when I was suffering through some career disappointment, or more likely, some romantic Hiroshima.

"If you’ve prayed that God would take the desire away if it’s not from Him, and you still have that desire, God probably is going to fufill it."

All my adult life I wanted to be an actor; to write and do comedy. Just make a living at it. And I have. In the past. But the fact is, the market has changed, I’ve gotten older, and well, shit happens. Were my desires wrong? Or did God fail to come through? I don’t know the answer.

I recently got cast in a national network commercial for Expedia.com. Finally! I thought. It had been way too long since my last national network spot. Finally. Thank you Lord.

Four hours later my agent called. "Susan, this has happened to me twice in my 15 years as an agent .... " I had been removed. Un-cast. Fired before I'd worked.
It wasn't the Lord's will.
So the Lord's will was to mess with my emotions? What was the real answer?
Sometimes, Sometimes the right answer, is "that sucks.

Well, some good did come out of this career death. I decided. Okay, if I'm not going to make a living at this: do I really want to do with my acting and writing talent? So I started to write essays and work on a solo show. And I’ve loved it. I’ve gotten some writing gigs out of it. I feel more joy and satisfaction about my talents than I ever did. But you know, God would it have been so wrong just to let the Excpedia commercial stay in?

Or it came to the guy and marriage. I figured, there isn’t really anyone right for me. So if I’m going to live the rest of my life as a single person, what do I need to do to make that life a good one? Who’s my tribe, my family? Where can I give back and not get stuck being a selfish old woman with cats? What’s going to bring me joy and happiness?

SO I started a writers’ group, I did more reading, I got involved in a church, I volunteered. And you know, my life is really rich. I have a lot going on and it’s wonderful.

And lo and behold, He shows up. No, not some guy. THE guy. The guy who's beyond perfect for me. Our lives fit in a way I could never have imagined.

However, God DID NOT actually grant me the desire of my heart. Beucase my heart hade stopped desiring. God did not give what I wanted. He gave me more than I ever dared want. And that’s where I’m blown away. I feel sad that I didn't meet him sooner. But if I had, maybe I wouldn't have been able to recognize him.

Whether or not all this heartache was meant to be, it is. It was.

My wonderful man sent me this yesterday. Author Dave Eggers, quoted from the Harvard Advocate: What matters is that you do good work. What matters is that you produce things that are true and will stand. … What matters is not the perception, nor the fashion, not who's up and who's down, but what someone has done and if they meant it. What matters is that you want to see and make and do, on as grand a scale as you want, regardless of what the tiny voices of tiny people say. Do not be critics, you people, I beg you. I was a critic and I wish I could take it all back because it came from a smelly and ignorant place in me, and spoke with a voice that was all rage and envy. Do not dismiss a book until you have written one, and do not dismiss a movie until you have made one, and do not dismiss a person until you have met them. It is a f__load of work to be open-minded and generous and understanding and forgiving and accepting, but Christ, that is what matters. What matters is saying yes.

My cynical heart is learning to say yes.
Go out and say yes to the life in front of you. When it sucks, say Yes, this part sucks. And when it's glorious say yes to that as well.

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