I broke Facebook this week, you guys. I’m officially adding it to my bio because I’m pretty sure that’s a little more impressive than some of the other accomplishments I usually include. Tricia Goyer invited me to be an “expert” (I will never stop putting that in quotes, by the way) for her Write That Book group, which is a beta test for Facebook to see how paid membership groups would work on their platform.
Somehow, the people at Facebook failed to add me to the group.
Cool guys. Super cool.
So our solution was that I would sign up for the free week that comes with the class, be added to the group, then cancel my membership and still be in there as an expert. Except that didn’t work at all the way we planned. After a few days of trying to figure out why I kept getting kicked out of the group (which was SUPER convenient on the day I had my office hours and was supposed to be connecting with & encouraging all the wonderful writers), they finally came to the realization that I broke their beta test and they would have to go write ALL NEW CODE because of me.
So, if you’re in that group, I’ll be back in approximately 2 weeks. I hope.
I was sharing this story with my editor yesterday, as we were both working from home. Our daughters were introduced to one another, I got a computer screen hug from her youngest, and we were both writing with whatever our kiddos had left around for us – crayons, markers, random scraps of paper and post-it notes. We laughed at the blurred lines of work and home life and cheered one another on in our holy hustle. Because sometimes to make things work, you have to work with what you’ve got. Even if it means writing with crayons.
Maybe we should wrap up that book club now? I’m such a terrible judge of how into these things you guys are – I know blog comments aren’t really a big thing anymore. I also know I was HORRIBLE about actually doing any kind of Instagram live stuff, so thanks for putting up with me anyway!
This might have been one of the harder chapters for me to write. Community is really hard for me. I’ve been kicked out of online communities, struggled to maintain friendships, and felt like a massive failure when it comes to this stuff. I’ve learned that a lot of it is because of my own flawed expectations – that it has to look a certain way, or include a lot of people. I’ve also learned that God didn’t create us to go through life alone, and that it’s worth every bit of hard work and bravery to keep choosing community. You just need to find the one that is right for YOU – not the one you think you should be in.
- What has been your favorite community or friendship moment?
- How do you find the courage to stay in community when it’s hard?
Do you attend a candlelight service on Christmas Eve? It’s one of my favorite moments of the season. One little light in the dark, barely shining, gets passed to one person, and then 10, and then a whole room of candles lights up the night. That’s what can happen when we choose to embrace the gifts God has given us and to use them alongside others. On our own we can only do so much – but together? We can be a beautiful light to the world, reflecting the love and hope of Christ.
- What is your favorite Scripture about light?
- What would it mean in your life if you were to stop hiding your light?
If it’s any indication about where I fall on the work/rest scale, the fact that I wrote for 9 chapters about work and just one about rest should give you a big clue. Rest is hard for me. I’m not good at it. I don’t even sleep well at night. Physical rest is one thing, but making it a priority to rest in the Lord – trusting Him with my plans and my dreams? That’s a whole other level of hard. So that final commissioning and prayer at the end of the book? It’s for me, as much as it is for you. And it’s what I’m praying over us today as we wrap up this book club.
Father, help us to work hard, love others, and rest well. When life gets hard and things don’t go our way, may we turn to You in prayer instead of trying to fix it on our own. When we doubt where You’ve called us, the gifts You’ve given us, or our worth, may we turn to Your Word to be reminded that we are loved and chosen, and that You do not make mistakes.
Thank you, Lord, for allowing us to be Your hands, feet, and heart here on earth. May the work of our hands and the words we speak be a gift back to You. – Amen
- When was the last time you truly rested?
- What do you need to hand over to God today so that you can rest in His plan for your life?
Ok, so that’s it for our book club! I would love if you would consider sharing Holy Hustle with a friend this Christmas. It makes a pretty great stocking stuffer, if I do say so myself!
Lila Diller says
What has been your favorite community or friendship moment? It’s so hard to choose one! Facebook groups have been instrumental in keeping me sane while going through some changes in scheduling, interests, and friends’ schedules. I’ve loved the safe spaces to share in my private small groups for Online Bible Studies with Proverbs31. Go #group14! And I’ve also made some great online friends in two other writing groups.
How do you find the courage to stay in community when it’s hard? Honestly, I struggle with this. When an online community starts getting boring, monotonous, or unfriendly, I usually phase out of a group and move on to somewhere else. If it’s a face-to-face community, I usually pull back, too. I have just started lowering my expectations and still being there, just not as gung-ho or as vulnerable as I used to be.
What is your favorite Scripture about light? As someone who used to be scared of the dark, all these verses have become special to me! John 8:12, Psalm 27:1, and Ephesians 5:8-10 are some of my favorites. I also loved how the very first verse you mentioned in this list in ch. 9 was Exodus 13:21, which reminded me of a special playlist of Christian songs about miracles (www.liladiller.com/blog/miracles). It still reminds me of that special message from the Lord.
What would it mean in your life if you were to stop hiding your light? I have begun to do this just in the last two years. I’m using Christian assumptive language in the secular writing groups I’m in, not being–or even feeling–apologetic for talking about my beliefs. This has also translated in be opening up more to the women in our huge church. I’ve always been shy, but now I can strike up a conversation with women who used to intimidate me. It’s taken courage I didn’t know I had. But it’s the Lord working on me and through me. I want to get even braver and bolder.
When was the last time you truly rested? Last Saturday I just hit pause and took a break from my writing (NaNoWriMo is creatively exhausting!), editing side gigs, and stress in general. I spent the day just playing with my kids, reading for pleasure, and avoided anything requiring mental energy. Now, I didn’t spend much time in prayer or Bible study, no more than usual, because I knew I was going to church on Sunday. Sunday was more of a stressful day, because my husband was sick, so I had to drive myself and my kids to church, and driving always stresses me out. Our Sunday School teacher ended up not being there, neither my husband nor the other sub, so we didn’t have any lesson. So my only spiritual meal was in the main service, where the Lord’s Supper was scheduled. My oldest took it with me, but my youngest doesn’t quite understand it all yet, so I was a little distracted trying to keep him quiet and busy during the sermon beforehand. But the actual Communion was a sweet time of fellowship, of resting in God’s grace and promises.
What do you need to hand over to God today so that you can rest in His plan for your life? My fears that my author business will flop. He has me here for a reason, and I want to serve Him well at whatever stage I’m in.
Thank you so much for this virtual book club! It was really helpful to take some time every week to process what I’d read, instead of skimming through to get the salient points (oops, sound like hustle gets into my reading schedule, too!). I enjoyed the book and the message so much that I’m going to publish a full review on my blog on Tuesday! It will be live at 6 am on December 4, 2018, at http://www.liladiller.com/blog/holyhustle. Thanks again for a much needed reminder to work hard + rest well!
Crystal Stine says
Thank you so much! I’m so glad you enjoyed the book and the book club 🙂