“I find myself being told constantly and from almost every direction that I am in danger of becoming irrelevant if I don’t stay current with the latest developments in computers and appliances and transportation and the media.”
Eugene H. Peterson — A Long Obedience in the Same Direction
There’s a strange danger in the world of writing. Sit down one day, and write something that makes an impact, and the next day, you have to start all over again. One hit song is a wonder, but more is better. There’s an underlying sense of urgency to keep up, read everything, and not get left behind. Don’t become irrelevant, a voice inside me warns.
There is something good in growing, changing, and learning from others. But there is something evil in constantly measuring, never resting, and finding worth in where I am compared to others. If I’m constantly trying to keep up in this life, I know I’m not going to enjoy it that much. If I’m putting false pressure on my own writing, I know it won’t be all that great to read.
I would venture to say that the same is true in most other professions—in most people. Musicians must redefine their music, release new albums, and over and over again, must outperform themselves. Teenagers want to keep up with their friends and frenemies. Real Estate agents work tirelessly to follow the market, watch the trends, stage and sell. Mothers want their children to walk at the right time; they aim to serve daily dinners that are just the right amount of blogable delicious.
How do we get relief from seeking relevance?
Colossians 3:23 says, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” But I’d like to know how to do it. How do I do what I’m doing without worrying about how other people are doing what they’re doing?
No answers. Just questions.
[Photo credit: Pleasing Aesthetics]