This week I am in a church basement working on an icon. I am grateful that I blogged about the last one I did because I know that I complained of being exhausted five years ago. I am exhausted now. The class officially starts today, but I have already been working on my icon for two days. Yesterday, I gave up when it was already after 8 p.m., I was having terrible difficulty getting the gold to adhere to the halo. So, I shall hit it this morning, hopefully fresh and full of energy and willingness to have new lessons in humility.
I am fighting something we alcoholics ironically call "perfectionism." A better term might be "quit before we try-ism," because I want to get it right, without effort, and without any difficulty. Barring that, I would like to simply walk away. In my warped mind, I want my teacher, who has been doing this for a lifetime, to say to me - "oh my goodness, Mary! You are a natural! Who ever saw such a beautiful thing?" Instead I am hearing "don't worry, we can fix this."
That urge to be at the top of the heap, and if not the top, then the bottom, or walk away - is something I have had to pray to be released from, for all of my life. Most of the time these days it is not something I even think about. But when trying something new and challenging, it does come up.
God is with me every step of the way, so when I ask him for help, it is there. I think I shall ask him.