Tuesday, 20 January 2015

One Thing

Different occupations suit different personalities (obviously).

I could not bear the idea of going in to work day by day – in an office or school or hospital. Even when I had a salaried position, I needed to work in a role where I could create my own schedule and operate in a variety of locations.

I’m okay in a team if I have my own specifically delineated contribution – I’m spectacularly bad at sharing a task. Are you doing it or am I? Whose responsibility is this?

The key to my present occupation as a self-employed writer (Oh cripes – that reminds me – I must have a magazine deadline coming up. Yikes!) is what my beautiful mama always referred to as “being a self-starter”. Some people left to manage their own day will procrastinate and lose heart, getting lonely and discouraged.

Today – cold, grey, gloomily clouded – I just don’t feel like working. In such circumstances I require of myself One Thing (actually One Thing After Another, but I pretend that’s not so, leading my reluctant psyche slowly through a series of tasks).

One Thing to do for the household – taking six bags of clutter to the charity shop.

One Thing towards the evening meal – get the mince out of the freezer.

One Thing to further work already in hand – check Amazon copy, contact publisher to get it corrected, download photo file in preparation for forthcoming blog post.

One Thing towards a project undertaken – in this case, writing one Bible study towards a series promised to the Bible Reading Foundation’s New Daylight.

One thing to firm up a piece of work taken on locally – today, a home visit to someone who has lost a loved one, to talk through what they would like for the family funeral.

One thing towards the next novel planned  some preparatory reading.

Self-employment requires that a person have the determination and perseverance to keep on doing one thing; putting one foot in front of the other regardless of mood or inclination. To work faithfully and well in solitude, remembering deadlines and crafting something workmanlike and beautiful for the glory of God and because others have placed their trust in me.

A journey of 1000 miles begins with one step. In the end, there could be no greater prize imaginable than to hear Jesus say, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.” This, above all, is my heart’s desire.


21 comments:

Anne Booth said...

That's excellent and inspiring!

beth said...

Thank you for those words. I, too, work at home and appreciate the wisdom in this post. It reminds me of what Elisabeth Elliot used to say, "do the next thing." But I like the idea of one thing in a variety of categories.

I'm looking forward to your next book. Hope the research and writing are moving along to your satisfaction and joy.

Pen Wilcock said...

:0) Hello, friends! Waving! xx

Elizabeth @ The Garden Window said...

I like the idea of One Thing, in various categories - makes it seem very achievable and not at all overwhelming.

Pen Wilcock said...

:0) xx

Deborah Jenkins said...

Pen, this is beautiful and inspiring, as your writing always is. It also reminds me that though I long for that kind of life there is a downside, as there is to everything. Feel like a caged bird in my present job, but God finds me time to write in the unexpected crevices and corners of life which is great.I will pray for you as you do your "one things" Will you, if I come to mind, pray for me in my cage? :)

Pen Wilcock said...

Heheh - for sure. But be warned, if I do that, without a doubt I shall be fiddling with the door catch, comparing notes with Jesus, seeing if we can't get this thing open, between us . . . xx

Deborah Jenkins said...

Thank you! I am looking forward to that :) xx

Pen Wilcock said...

:0) xx

rebecca said...

This is such a great and useful concept (and - not coincidentally - quite Biblical as well). Thanks for the good example and much-needed reminder.

Pen Wilcock said...

:0) xx

Julie B. said...

An excellent way to look at things. I think, however, that if I had your list of One Things, it would have to do me for a week, not a day. :)

Pen Wilcock said...

:0D xx

San said...

Just what I needed to read today ... Having crafted in isolation and feeling very blah!!

Xx

Pen Wilcock said...

:0) Waving! xx

margaret said...

This reminds me of my grannie's “Rule of Three”. She always claimed that no matter how bad things were you could always do three things. When my room was a mess and my mother was yelling about the East End in the Blitz, Grannie would say, “Do three things. Any three things to make it better. Then next time you're in or you pass the door do another three things.” And it worked. Later I figured out that once you've done three things it energises you to do another three and another three after that. When she felt rubbishy she'd tell herself, “I only have to do three things to get through the day... I need to light the fire, make dinner, and catch the postman...”. I still do it. I say, “I need to feed the cat, say the Offices, and take out the trash.” I think being able to see the tiny parts that make a whole is so important when it comes to not being overwhelmed.

Pen Wilcock said...

:0D

Margaret, that's so wonderfully vivid! How lovely to hear from you. xx

Jenna said...

One thing or three--all great thoughts on not getting overwhelmed which is so bless-edly easy these days. Now, to figure out how I'll remember to assign myself the next thing or the next three....

Pen Wilcock said...

:0) xx

Anonymous said...

This sounds like my life as a full time mum for the last 32 years.This is my vocation fulfilled"one thing at a time", most things not connected to each other like"make a dentist appointment for the children, take dear husband's suit to the drycleaners and check the old lady next door is ok! And I thank God for putting me in charge of my family and friends while my husband is the provider.Not fashionable, but it's great

Pen Wilcock said...

Hooray! A contented life is one of the most beautiful things on earth.

Personally I believe every household needs what I call a "house-angel". I don't think it matters if it's the mother of the family or someone else - but someone home for deliveries and in case the neighbours have a panic or the kids get sick and need a day off school. Someone to have the fire lit and the supper on . . .