The Lesson on the Dust Tracks: The Orange Crate and the Bean Bag
Have you ever considered your next step and hesitated because of the lack of time, resources, or necessary skills? Have you ever made excuses for not doing what God has placed within your heart? Have you stopped working toward your goal because you are unable to see a reward or the light at the end of the tunnel? While attending a workshop in Florida, I had the opportunity to reflect on my life as a writer. Although, I attended the session so that I could share resources with my co-workers, I was excited about having time to work quietly on several writing projects. I had listed several items on my to-do list and I planned to end the week with a completed task list. My plans soon collided with my true purpose for attending the session. Each day I experienced "a message in life's little moments," as my to-do list grew. Instead of completing tasks, God was giving me more tasks to complete. By the second day, I decided to commit to an attentive student and an open vessel. During our sixth day of training, we boarded a bus and traveled to Fort Pierce, Florida to tour the Dust Tracks Trail. It was here that I saw something that will remain etched in my memory. Two items grabbed my attention forced me to abandon any excuse that I ever tried to make. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to photos while inside the last home in which the author Zora Neale Hurston lived; however, I will describe to you what I saw in hopes that you will have a similar epiphany. The house was too small to accommodate us all, so we were divided into groups of 10 in order to enter the four room cinder block house. Those who were waiting to enter were told that the author had a hot plate for preparing her food, but she spent so much time writing that she often forgot to eat. A local physician, his daughters, and other members of the community took turns bringing her food because of they understood the love she had for her work. When was the last time I was so passionate about something that I forgot to eat? (I will let you know if I think of a time!) When I entered the house, I did not have any expectation of receiving a divine revelation of any kind. Then I approached the second bedroom which she converted into an office. I stood in the door of that bedroom as others passed by. I thought of all the excuses that I make when I should be writing. "I need to update my desk." "I need a better space for writing." "I need another notebook." "I want to binge watch a Netflix series." "I don't have time." All of those excuses seemed useless as I stared at the orange crate, which held an old typewriter, and her bean bag "office" chair. This woman worked through hunger pangs because she needed to release the words that were trapped inside of her. She didn't allow the lack of resources--a real desk and chair--to prevent her from completing the tasks before her. The orange crate and bean bag will serve as a reminder that the perfect time to complete the task is now. I may not have all the resources that I think I need, but I have the promise of the Father. Have you been like me, guilty of focusing on the means instead of the message? What assignment has God called you to complete? How many excuses have prevented you from being obedient? The next time that you are tempted to say, "I would do________, but I don't have _________," please visualize an orange crate and a bean bag. The chances of me seeing those two items in the same space again are pretty slim; however, the purpose that they served will never escape me. When you prepare to walk into your kingdom assignment, make sure you have your orange crate and your beanbag. The orange crate upholds, while the bean bag supports. Those items were tangible for Hurston. For you and I, we don't have to see them in the natural to understand their spiritual purpose. Today I challenge you to abandon the excuses and move fully into the assignment that God has called you into. Instead of making excuses, let's make it happen!