No doubt the need for attention runs deep and cuts across species. The ways to get it range from the unabashed screams of a two-year-old in the candy aisle to the unsubtle greeting of a wife wrapped in cellophane (some advice I once read—but never tried—for attracting a husband’s attention).
Even the family pooch has ways to let her needs be known, as mine did with a roll of toilet paper.
Her little fit was a timely reminder. I had been preoccupied with preparations for an upcoming writers conference where the pressure to gain an editor's or agent’s attention is heightened. Some people wear bold colors, hats, or signature outfits to stand out; some ignore table etiquette and talk nonstop about their projects, and some simply retreat in insecurity.
Although prone to attention angst as much as anyone, I have been discovering the peace the relinquishing my needs to the Lord and enjoying the ways He meets them. Usually they are not the ways I would have expected.
Usually they involve thinking of someone else first.
I saw a beautiful illustration of this while reading Samuel this week. Saul’s insecurity in light of David’s skills made him a slave to jealousy and its bottomless depths of destruction. Saul’s son Jonathan, on the other hand, was willing to let go of that which could have been his—a kingdom and honor—for the sake of another.
He went so far as even giving up his armor, his means of defense and offense, to bless and equip another.
And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David, and his armor and even his sword and his bow and his belt. And David went out and was successful. 1 Samuel 18:4
What a position of peace and strength, that place of such love and trust in the Lord as my defense and my provider that I can strip myself of all the undo efforts of self-promotion and bless another. No jealousy, striving, or worry. No need for shredded toilet paper or cellophane.
Trusting the One who turns the hearts of kings (and editors) for favor if due and in turn equipping another.
May this be the reality of my heart’s hope both at the conference for which I leave shortly and in the days that I am given.
I pray that if anyone is feeling particularly unnoticed and in need of attention, that you too be blessed with the freedom of entrusting your longing unto the Lord and letting Him bestow His favor.
I look forward to sharing and hearing what the Lord will do.