Vanity and Validation

It’s been a blessedly busy week as I prepare for the imminent launching of our Delight in Disorder mission through the campaign.  It has been very fruitful.  I was able to re-connect with two pastor friends who have asked to read my manuscript.  I went through a final self-edit of the text and sent my proposed revisions to my editor.  I started a Facebook Author page and had fun recruiting followers to “like” me with promises to unseat Ted Cruz (at 100 “likes”) and overthrow the government (at 200).

I’ve received a good deal of positive attention for my writing, my wit, my wisdom. But I hear the preacher from Ecclesiastes ringing in my ears – “… vanity of vanities! All is vanity”  I know that just as quickly as I was able to solicit 78 “likes” (and counting), they can all drift away.  Just like Jesus who went from the loud praise of “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.” to “Crucify him.” in one hellish holy week. Cheering crowds can become jeering mobs in less time than it takes to make instant pudding.

My editor – Leanne Sype  (a very wise woman for her tender years) commented on an earlier post that she was happy to see me having fun with all the attention.  But she cautioned me not to look to the “likes” for validation.  So true.

As much fun as I had stirring up a following last night, I experienced much more joy today as I went to visit some good friends – Mike and Kim – I hadn’t seen in almost a quarter century, and their daughters Ursula and Greta whom I had never met.  Over a lovely lunch of lamb burger and goat cheese cherry ice cream, we shared our passions, fond memories, hopes, and dreams.  Afterwards, Mike and I enjoyed a leisurely discussion of literature and he gave me a book I’m looking forward to reading.

Validation comes not from clicks on a keyboard (as nice as they are), but from relationships nurtured in faith and in love.

Thank you, Mike and Kim, for the good food and particularly for your faithful friendship.  May you be blessed as you are a blessing to me.

Friends forever

 from Michelle Cook

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