Joy in Waiting

I posted another “selfeo” on Facebook the other day, but I took it back down 20 minutes later. It was filled with lamenting over another part I didn’t get, my children not eating the food I cooked, and my wardrobe needing an update due to gained weight. It was all very funny, I thought. But, I was afraid people would take it seriously and really think I was crying over these things. Because there were tears. But I’m an actor…soo…

My husband and I have both been hearing lately about how our priorities should always be to bring God glory. That is our purpose in life. Acting is my passion. It is not my purpose. If the best way I can bring God the honor He deserves is by maintaining a grateful attitude even when I don’t get the part, then great. I am really okay with that. It doesn’t mean I’m lazy and don’t spend time preparing for every audition, but it does mean I am able to let go very easily. Once I walk back out of that room, it is in God’s hands. Sometimes I’ll go home and practice a couple more times with the direction the casting director gave me, just to see what I was missing. But I still know, it is no longer in my hands. It really takes the pressure off! I don’t find my validation in jobs. I find it in the early morning when my makeup is half off and my hair is disastrous and I’m holding a cup of coffee reading about how God cares for His people enough to speak to them from a burning mountain or walk among them and eat with them and hear their stories. I am so grateful for Him.

We are in the midst of some big life decisions (who isn’t, right?) and the thing that has kept us going on a path that really doesn’t make any logical sense is the fact that we know God spoke, and we know our story is not about us, but about Him. I’m okay with taking our time. I keep coming back to Proverbs 20:21 which says “An inheritance quickly gained in the beginning will not be blessed in the end.” It helps me keep the right perspective. In some ways, acting has been a lifelong pursuit, but on paper, professionally, I’ve been doing this for about 1.5 years. Meaning, I’m still in school, pretty much. I’m getting my degree by going to auditions as much as possible. I hope for the best and try for the best, but it is not lost on me that I have much to learn.

I just finished reading “Abraham Lincoln: A Biography” by Benjamin P. Thomas. What an incredible story of difficulties, failings, mistakes, frustrations, and every once in a while, victories. But not gained without the tenacity of a man who had been put through the furnace multiple times, tried by friend and foe, and suffered losses I cannot imagine. His road to the presidency is discouraging even to read, with so many political losses it would have been enough to deter nearly anyone. After one of these “failures,” in Chapter 7, Thomas writes,

“Apprehending that he had no future in politics, Lincoln did not repine. He began at once to make himself a better lawyer and a more enlightened man, and the decision made the years of his political retirement, from 1849 to 1854, among the most fruitful of his life. For as he put aside all thought of political advancement and devoted himself to personal improvement, he grew tremendously in mind and character.”

This time was essential to Lincoln to prepare him for the difficult presidency that lay ahead. “If you have raced with men on foot and they have worn you out, how can you compete with horses? If you stumble in safe country, how will you manage in the thickets by the Jordan?” Jeremiah 12:5.

I know this all sounds very deep for an actress who just had an audition for living room furniture, but it is reading these sorts of things that keep me encouraged in life, not just in my career. I have another audition tomorrow, which absolutely thrills me! So here we go again!

 

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