Want to control—or even eliminate—selfishness? I have the perfect solution! Get married.
I know that sounds a wee bit like an oxyclean commercial but…it is true nonetheless. Before I was married, I was consumed by my own dreams. Dreams of becoming an internationally respected writer. Owning and sustaining my own business. Being able to bless people in Oprah-like proportions. Every small thing mattered to me because…well, it only impacted me. I didn’t have to consider anyone else’s feelings. I was in hot pursuit of destiny and was determined to ride my ambition into the sunset of my life.
Then everything changed. I said I do…and now I know fully what that means.
My dreams have now become intertwined and interdependent on those of my husband. Any pursuit requires his imput and sometimes his “awful” way of weighing and discerning the good and the bad of an undertaking. Gosh, I hate his balanced reasoning, his wisdom sometimes! I also must consider the dreams that he had long before he met me and somehow find a way to take a large portion of my time and apply it to helping him acheive his goals as he has done for me so many times prior to our marriage…in preparation for having me forever. If I’m honest, I didn’t prepare so much in that area and now I’m finding out that it really isn’t all about me. The horror!
God has made it (as he is accustomed to doing) so that the sin of selfish ambition is no longer an option for me. When it comes to my dreams, the tunnel vision that I prided myself on for so long has now become a four lane highway filled with other cars. The traffic in my head and heart can sometimes get congested but I can revel in one awesomely good thing…they are all going the same way.
So it is a good thing. Even when I miss those neon lights that only I could see pointing down from the heavens at me, I realize that this transference, this new sense of balance has been another tool of the Most High to shape me into the woman I am becoming. It has changed me.
Do I still pursue writing with a passion? Yes, of course. But, guess what? My previous four books will have nothing on the ones to come because the very definition of passion has changed for me since I’ve been married. It is a selfless passion that gives more than it receives and yet receives with such an intensity that I’m okay with that. By learning and loving with my husband, I find myself taking the time to explore and examine all of the nuances of people that I would have ignored in the past. I appreciate the small discoveries and share them willingly and often. This, I’ve found, has given my characters more depth, my plots more complexity, and ultimately, my stories more impact.
So it all works out.