To a writer, getting becalmed means failing to fill the sails with energy from his readers and not reaching the shore of a good response.
It has been six months since the publication of Streamside – Finding Peace through Perfect Unity. Suddenly the sails have gone slack and I have been battling feelings of failure. That explains the pause in blog posts for a couple weeks.
It seems that almost no one is interested in joining a movement for more perfect unity in the Christian church, even as our brothers and sisters around the world and even here in America are encountering ever-increasing persecution. I had believed that Streamside would trigger some hearts strings to resonate with what Jesus commanded us so long ago.
But wait a minute. There is a difference between what I cannot control and what I can. The former is not failure – it is God’s plan for something I haven’t figured out yet.
What does a becalmed sailor do? He prays for wind and then he waits for God’s timing, which may or may not be right away.
Then what does the becalmed author do? This one has spent two weeks praying for the spirit to stir hearts, especially mine for new insights into where I should go according to his will. What better metaphor for the Holy Spirit than the wind?
Just a few days ago, a colleague asked about the book and said his wife is reading it. He said she is having a hard time with it because it is so long. I have heard this before, but his sincerity and caring made me listen more closely. He asked why I chose the format I had presented, and I responded that I wanted to communicate a model for perfect unity that would help people apply it in real life.
He said (in my words, not his), “Maybe you published the research rather than the story itself?”
That caused me to recall and earlier conversation earlier the same day with another dear friend offering constructive criticism.
Was that the whiff of a slight breeze just then?
Come back next time and see what happened.
And it is now open season: your thoughts on Streamside are more than welcome. How would you use it to teach unity to an uninterested family?