On Book Writing and Making Lemonade

I made lemonade the other night.

It sounds so simple, so ordinary, but it matters to my husband. He likes lemonade. He likes having something to drink (besides water). And I couldn’t remember the last time I made something to drink for anyone in our family.

For the last ten months I have been working on a book about the value of the work of the home. Not so much about who is doing it, but why it matters—why it is a good contribution to society. I believe God has created us to work. We bear his image, and he works. So it makes sense that even the work of the home is part of imaging him.

In our society we either swing the pendulum to the point of idolatry when it comes to the work of the home, or completely disregard it as beneath people with a brain. I am hoping to swing the pendulum to the middle. It matters. It’s good work. But it’s not the ultimate work. No work is the ultimate work. It is just work, given to us by God to bring him glory and love our neighbors.

Making lemonade the other night was a turning point for me. For some reason when I work on a project (whether it’s speaking or writing), God works it into my soul first, which means I usually struggle with it. When I taught on Ruth a couple of months ago I went through a hard season where I really doubted God’s goodness and faithfulness. Now that I’ve been working on this book about the value of the work of the home, I’ve been struggling to have joy in it (and struggling to find time to do it—hence, I hadn’t made any cold beverage for anyone—myself included—in months).

Until the lemonade.

Something happened. Call it more headspace with the completion of the book on the horizon, or call it more sleep, or call it whatever you want, but I think God broke through and gave me joy in my work. I don’t always love taking care of people. I’m a sinner. I like my personal time. I like things to go the way I want them to go. I like order and don’t like when people mess that order up, even people who are three feet tall. But I also believe that my work (and all work) is not about me, it’s about the good of my neighbor, and ultimately the world. I couldn’t see that the last few months. I thought the work of caring for others was an impediment to what I wanted to do, and it showed.

So the book is done, for now. It’s submitted and out of my hands. In the final days of writing the first draft, the desire to make lemonade for my family felt like a gift to this weary, confused writer. I wanted to see what I believed bearing fruit in my life, and for some reason it wasn’t. But God broke through, gave me eyes to see the good work in front of me, and I made lemonade.