Last night my daughter silently stared at me, which isn't unusual by any means because she is always quietly observing everything around her taking everything in. What made me laugh a little was when my wife told me, "She is watching you age." Yes, my birthday was only about an hour away when I started making goo-goo faces at my daughter with her stone cold look. I doubt she was watching my twenties slip away from me, but I know that I was getting a little excited to see where my thirties would take me. I have been putting a lot of plans in place for the next decade of my life. Two of the things that I plan on doing are getting healthier and pouring more into others than myself, which will include both my family and those I meet. I've been constantly encouraged by certain people that either I follow have been blessed enough to follow in life and those that I know only digitally. When you spend as much time reading as I do you start to collect a wide range of knowledge on both useful and completely erroneous subjects, but you need to guard your heart and mind against the things you start consuming.
Over the course of my life I've stumbled and fallen several times, but I have also learned how to dust off the funk and move on. The true nature that I lack is being able to trust in others and most importantly being able to trust in God. The Christian life is in no way easy and while others may scoff at me for saying this I will never stop proclaiming who the Lord of my life is, because He has provided me with so much that there will never be a moment when I will stop loving Him. I have seen the bottom of life, the top, and every place in between because the road that I've had to travel hasn't been an easy one. It required work, sacrifice, and always required faith to find my way in the darkness. Though as the years have begun stacking up I know that my master hasn't always been God when it should be.
"One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much. If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches? And if you have not been faithful in that which is another's, who will give you that which is your own? No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money." Luke 10-13 (ESV)
Writing and the web are my two passions at the moment, which come a close third and fourth to God and my family. Pour your heart into the things that you love in the order that you love them. The last two years I have been so diligent to build my career that I often neglected friends and family for the power of the dollar. Now that I look back, what have I honestly gained? At the end of the day I more tired and drained than I feel accomplished and successful. Every self-help book would say "Do what you love!" but if what you love is taking you away from everything else around you then have you truly gained anything when your heart and mind are drained in the process. For me personally it has always been tough to manage what I'm passionate about because Ive always taken them to the extremes; workaholic? Yes, I am a workaholic and it shows. What needs to change is what I am a workaholic about? If I spent as much time in the Word and with God as I do working on various side projects and so forth then I might actually have gained a more valuable return on my investment.
The Next Decade
Over the course of the next decade I have 3 goals that I'm going to try to accomplish and be diligent with in order to recharge my heart with what I need most which is the joy that has been leaking out of the gas tank over the last few years.
- Read and ponder on the Word of God
- Finish the books in my writing queue (Yes, there are more than one)
- Start my own web design business
My business partner would laugh or be scared at the last one because I have technically started doing that already, however, I look at it more in terms of being able to stand on my own with others who are as passionate about great web experiences as I am.
Let the planning, preparation, and real work begin.