Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Bite Size

 It's a simple fact that bite sized midnight milky ways are even better than the full size candy bar. Okay, it's a 'simple fact' that my opinion is such at any rate. Not that I'm not hating on the full size version of my favorite candy bar, just saying that bite size is an even better thing. Why? Because there's more semisweet chocolate to marshmallowy nougat ratio. It's perfect. And given that it's a darn good candy bar to begin with, improving on greatness in a bite sized snippet like that is pretty impressive.

 Another area where I've discovered the beauty of a snippet is in postcards. I used to be of the mind that a letter worth writing was worth writing long. To be worthy of sending I thought I needed to embark on a veritable novel. Apparently I had not yet stumbled upon Blaise Pascal's words, “I'm sorry I wrote you such a long letter; I didn't have time to write a short one.” In the last couple of years though I've discovered that I enjoy simply hearing from someone, and small notes from dear friends make me very happy. Along with this I recognized what a great little thing postcards are and started sending more of them and notes too. A postcard is  agreat little snippet because it can bring the receiver a bit of where you are in a visual sense as well as forcing the writer to either focus on a single moment or edit a full experience into a few sentences. It's a great exercise in editing yourself. Which is something that I could often use.
 "Bite sizes" are on my brain because of the inspiration of a wonderful woman whose radio ministry I benefit from- Joni Erickson Tada. Joni's ministry, Joni & Friends, includes daily encouragements & devotionals in 5 & 1 minutes segments. I used to hear her as a kid when WCRH was on at our house and when I was living in NYC last year I rediscovered these clips online. Keeping on track & motivated was often difficult in the Big Apple and I was looking for something to spurn me on. Dragging myself out of bed to get to Manahattan and the stockrooms at Macy's it was great to be able to listen to Joni remind me of the goodness of Christ, and Whose I am, and encourage me in living in the light. And because I often got up twenty minutes before I needed to head out the door it was great to know there was something short but meaningful to help start my day right.

 While listening to her out of the blue the other day-it had been a while since I'd listened to a clip- I found it inspiring that she was faithful to this part of her ministry that looks like such a small thing time wise but has a big impact.  It made me start wondering what I could do in five minutes. In one minute. Mostly in terms of what skills and gifts God has given me to use. Where can those go?Writing a full length play seems daunting. But can I get onto working some sketches? What can I do in bite sizes? 
 Not just me though. The reason Joni's work is so effective is because it is centered in God in Christ. It's not just her work. She's doing it but it's the work God gave her to do. That's something crucial for me to remember as I look to work on bitesizes. So I'm going to be praying about & taking action in bitesizes. Because little midnight milky ways are delightful.