April 14, 2014

Working or Just Dreaming?

I joined instagram a few days ago (I'm @devotedquilter). I am amused by how quickly I began to feel the pull to check my instagram feed often to see what people have posted. It's fun to get little snippets of their lives, especially snippets of what they're stitching. The list of blogs I follow has been growing too, so I spend time every day checking in to see what's new on my bloglovin feed.

I want to be working on my own quilty projects, though, so I have to be careful how much time I spend looking at others' creations. I only have so much "me" time, after all. If I spend it all sitting with my laptop or my phone I won't get much stitched together myself.

Surprisingly, the Bible even talks about that. "He who works his land will have abundant food, but the one who chases fantasies will have his fill of poverty" (Proverbs 28:19). I'm not working my land to grow my own food. I'm not even selling my quilts to buy groceries, but the principle stays the same. If I don't work, I won't have any results.

This may seem very basic. It may seem like it doesn't warrant much of our time, but the book of Proverbs puts a strong emphasis on the importance of work. We read in Proverbs 10:4: "Lazy hands make a man poor, but diligent hands bring wealth" and in chapter 13, verse 4: "The sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied." Chapter 20:4 says, "A sluggard does not plow in season, so at harvest time he looks but finds nothing."

We all have many different types of work we do. When I'm sewing, I say I'm working on a particular quilt, but there's really no part of it that feels like work. It's fun and I love to do it. Then there are other types of work that most certainly feel like work. Housecleaning? That's work. I don't want to do it, but it needs to get done at least some of the time. Whether it is the fun of working towards a quilting goal, or the necessary work that is required to earn a paycheck or keep the house and family in running order, if we don't do it we won't reap the benefit.

Thinking about making a quilt will not produce something I can snuggle under with a good book. Looking at instagram or blogs and dreaming about how I would make a particular quilt in my favourite colours won't either. While it doesn't much matter in the end whether or not I make another quilt, I don't want to spend all my time just dreaming about quilting. I want to dream and plan, yes, but I also want to actually quilt!

The same holds true for my writing. I spent years dreaming about writing, dreaming about finishing a book and getting it published, but doing little or no writing. It didn't get me very far. Now I am writing at least once a week and even when I'm not sitting and typing a devotion, I'm thinking about it, crafting parts of it in my mind as I do other things. Working on my writing has given me better results than just dreaming about it!

As for the housework...well, it won't do itself. My husband does a lot around the house, but there are some tasks that are mine and it's very noticeable when I neglect them. Thinking about how much we need clean laundry is not nearly as effective as putting clothes in the washer, then the dryer and then folding them so they can be put away.

Do you have work you want or need to do, but you find yourself spending more time thinking about it than actually doing it? Let this be your gentle reminder that getting to work will produce abundance, while just dreaming leads to nothing.

6 comments:

  1. I have not joined instagram b/c I do not know what it is and I do not have a cell phone. However, you got it right about the dreaming and thinking part, even the time spent planning and buying supplies but not quite getting at the project. I too am writing a book. You have encouraged me to get a bit done slowly instead of being overwhelmed by trying to write the whole thing in one day. I even hired a girl in need to do the typing so we both are winners.

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  2. It is a sad fact that the more bloggers I follow and am inspired by the less time I have to actually sew! This year though I have resolved to spend more time doing what I actually want to do and less time trying to fit in with other people's commitments, well that is the plan anyway :)

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  3. Could I use this a the basis for a sermon for a worship service i am leading in June. We are honouring our quilting group which makes quilts for soldiers

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    1. Suzzy, I hope you see this here as you are a no-reply commenter. Absolutely, go ahead and use this as the basis for your sermon. I'm honoured.

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  4. Such an interesting concept. It can be hard to find balance. I have found though, that reading blogs when I am too tired to quilt will inspire me to still get up and get busy. When I see what others have created I want to create something. Housework is another matter...

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