Apparently, I wrote something that went viral last week. And I didn’t even know it. It wasn’t because I forgot to check my blog stats, or to count the shares on Facebook. I didn’t know I did it, because I didn’t do it. Didn’t write even one of those words that did go viral. Another Jessica Kirkland did. She took the Internet by storm with these words about Anna Duggar.
It’s sort of sobering when you see someone else, someone with your name, doing things that you do. The other Jessica Kirkland was similar to me in some ways: apparently likes to write, mom, passionate. But, she is not me. And even she is not alone. Did you know that there is a Jessica Kirkland tennis star? I only know about her because people google her all the time and land on my blog. They type things like “Jessica Kirkland pretty tennis star pictures.” I bet they get a surprise when they find me and not her. It’s sort of weird to think of someone else out there running about the globe answering to my name. And when you get right down to it—there could be hundreds of us, maybe thousands.
This funny Jessica Kirkland incident was like the salutation to a long dialogue that I’ve been having with God for the past nine months. See, God has been redefining my calling. He’s been refocusing my time and reorienting my thoughts about what He wants me to do this year as both an agent and a writer. See, my profession is literary agent, where I speak and teach at conferences around the country. However, I got into this profession because I first wanted to be a writer. And as we all know, sometimes work starts to eat into more time than you mean it to. Especially, if you work from home like me. It’s hard to find the time to balance family, career, and creative passions, isn’t it? It is always sobering to see how quickly I find myself left of center. It’s a huge struggle for me to find the right balance so that I’m not wasting the gifts and talents God has entrusted to me.
What is especially sobering is to know that when we don’t obey God with the talents, and commands He has given us, that He can/will use someone else. See, there will always be someone else. Someone writing it down. Someone living it up. Someone to speak the words God asked you to speak, someone to write the book you always thought you’d write. There can easily be another person living a calling similar to yours, but they are not you. God wants to use you.
He made some of you teachers, and some of you artists, and some of you engineers, and some of you are moms that wear every hat every day for your spouse and children. I don’t ever want to live in the shadow of my own life. I don’t want to live the “almost” life. I want to live the life God has given me. I want to live it under the power and strength of the Holy Spirit so that I can look Jesus in the eye one day and hear Him say “well done” and not “almost.” There might be a host of people out there with similar names, interests, careers and passions but only one of them is you. I’ve learned my lesson this week, albeit an odd one. And hopefully it won’t take another “Jessica Kirkland” writing something viral to remind me to be obedient to God as I write the stories He’s called me to write.