Thursday, September 19, 2013

Neglecting the Gift

* I know my last post was really deep, too, but these things needed to be said. 
Maybe I'll make a post about my boyfriend tomorrow to lighten things up.
You never know.

So I'm sitting on my bed, reading the daily readings. I start with the First Reading, because, obviously, that's the order things go in. I flip to 1 Timothy 4, and read verses 12-16.

Right there in the middle. Underlined with the dark black pen.

Do not neglect the gift you have. 

This line is very convicting for me. Unlike Timothy, my gifts weren't conferred on me through 'prophetic word' or by 'the imposition of hands' (at least, not that I know of...). My gifts are the garden variety, I suppose. I write, I draw, I paint, I take pictures, I sew, I knit, I -

- no, wait.

I talk about doing those things. 

I've had several very long, very irritatingly true conversations with my boyfriend about the fact that I never finish things that I write, and that's pretty much because I just...don't write.

I talk about a lot of things, but I mostly do the following things, which are neither constructive, nor do they make me truly happy:

1. Go on the internet/computer (a lot).

2. Eat.

3. Complain.

I know I'm far from being the only young adult/teenager who suffers from this horrible condition of procrastination and mediocrity, while at the same time dying to be amazing and productive. 

But, as Spider Man always says no matter how many times they retell his tragic story through animation and live-action movies: "With great power comes great responsibility."


Translation: Spider Man's power was his 'gift'. 

So, too, with OUR great gifts, come great responsibilities. 

And its not exactly very responsible to neglect something only you have the ability to do, right? 

I ask you - what if Spider Man had sat around all the time watching movies instead of crawling up walls and fighting crime? 

Confession time:

I neglect my gifts. 

I shamelessly let them sit around, gathering dust in my closet and under my bed, because creating things and practicing things and DOING things - well, that takes work. And my natural, sinful inclination towards laziness and selfishness makes me want to avoid the work of exercising my gifts and just sit around doing nothing instead. 

I know better than anyone that doing nothing makes me unhappy. It makes me sick. It makes me feel genuinely repulsed towards myself. Because I was not made to do nothing; I was given a specific and very unique set of gifts that will enable me to do, quite literally, EVERYTHING I was put on this earth TO do. 


And I have first-hand evidence of how freaking AWESOME doing things can be.

I get to see a play that I WROTE being PERFORMED next month! I'm going to have to sit in the audience with a sock shoved in my mouth or something because if no one else laughs, I'll feel like an idiot. But this immense, beautiful blessing has only been given to me by God because I put in the work and effort to USE MY GIFT and write a short play. 

I am going to go back to Italy after only two years! Because I'm working my butt of to make enough money to go, and because I want to experience more of it. 

When we neglect our gifts, we are harming ourselves more than anything else. We'll never be truly happy. But at the same time, we are robbing the world of something only we can do/be. When we write our gifts off as hobbies (GUILTY), we are eliminating the possibility of ever letting the world see the glory of God in what He can do through us. 

My prayer in the midst of all these reflections is that I would stop neglecting my gifts. I pray that I would see how precious my time and talents are, and how quickly they will be gone if I neglect them. I spent the last two days downright sad and being very mean to myself, because, doing nothing, I was left feeling repulsed with myself. 

And that's not to say that we are only good if we are productive. That would suck. But it IS to say that because we are capable of letting God do great things through us, we should. 

It is the only responsible thing to do with these gifts we are empowered with - to use them, and to use them for the greater good, which only God can define. 

In the spirit of doing/creating things - I made this last night. I haven't had time with my suddenly very busy work schedule to make anything actually impressive, but I did have time to do some photo-editing with some song lyrics I really like. 

I am flawed
but I am cleaning up so well
I am seeing in me now
the things you swore
you saw yourself

Vindicated - Dashboard Confessional

Edited with my good friend PicMonkey.
(click to see larger)

God bless your weekend; use your gifts!

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