Letting Go, Life, Writing, and Margin

Letting Go, Life, Writing, and Margin - jenniferajanes.com

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Letting Go, Life, Writing, and Margin

I’ve been thinking a lot about my two words for 2014 lately. “Let God” has led me to let go of a home-based business I’ve built for two years, start a new one with accompanying ministry opportunities, and even reevaluate my blog and writing. It has been a difficult and painful process, but I’m finding something else.

Margin.

Just before the new year, I began a YouVersion.com devotional plan called “Margin.” It confirmed what I already knew—that I must determine what God’s purposes for my life are, and I must say no to every activity, no matter how good, that doesn’t fulfill His purposes for me. I’ve been seeking His will and wondering why, when I know He has called me to write, I also feel that He is drawing me to a new venture as well as renewing my passion and commitment to homeschooling our children and being the best mother I can be.

Then I realize something that I’ve heard before but that never hit me the way it has now. It also explains a lot about why I struggle so much in my calling as a writer.

My writing is an overflow of my life. If I don’t spend time living, I have nothing to write about.

Why has it taken me so long to realize that being a writer isn’t about just sitting in front of the computer all day every day. (Well, sometimes it is, but not usually.) One reason I struggle so with writing is because I’m focused on the writing, not the living!

When I play with my kids, read great books, start my day in prayer and Bible study, knit or crochet, have great conversations with friends, enjoy sharing dreams and plans with my husband, prepare great food for my family, and stay on top of my household chores, I have more to write about (and it comes more easily) than when I’m trying to “be a writer.” In fact, I often know exactly what I’ll write before I ever sit down with my computer because I’ve had ideas come to me throughout the day, and I’ve composed mentally in quiet moments doing dishes, folding laundry, and knitting or crocheting. That means less time sitting in front of a screen, which makes my husband and children very happy.

Why didn’t I see it before? Why did I read or hear it but not understand? I’m not sure why it’s taken me this long to comprehend the necessity of living a life full of love and purpose in order to be a good writer.

I’m just glad I finally got to this point. I’ll continue posting articles, but no more than two or three times a week, usually. I have a life to live with my beautiful family, with children who are growing up way too fast and a husband I need to stay connected to since I want our 12.5 years to be 200 more. I have books to write (and I’m working on that too), and I have a new ministry to pour into—one my children can fully participate in with me.

I’m excited to see where God is taking us, and I look forward to sharing the journey with you.

How do you build margin into your life to focus on what matters most?

Join me at iHomeschool Studio, an online homeschool conference with iHomeschool Network, this week for “Time Management for Special Needs Moms (and every other mom!)” as I share more of my journey toward margin and rest.

Can’t make the live session? Your ticket includes the MP3s of all sessions so you can listen to the recordings later!

iHomeschool Studio - jenniferajanes.com

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8 Responses to Letting Go, Life, Writing, and Margin

  1. Rebecca says:

    Very true. For me, my children are at an age where our discussions are going to deeper levels and that is leaving little time to write. I have things to write, but time is best spent (for me) right now – with them… Love you sweet friend and hope to see you soon.

    • Oh, yes! The discussions here are getting more interesting and deeper too, Rebecca, especially with my older daughter. I agree that keeping our priorities in order is key. Thank you for setting such a great example for me. Love you!

  2. this was really encouraging, I think you are onto something! I have no answers, because I am still struggling with this, I am not very good at margin and yet I feel called to homeschool and write…so, yeah…still trying to figure it all out :)

  3. Amen! What a good reminder! And I’m so happy that you’ve found some margin, my friend. <3

  4. Absolutely! And the more fully engaged I am in my life, with my children, homemaking, and marriage, the more ideas I have for writing. But then I have far less time to write them!

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