Monday, May 4, 2020

My Most Favorite Chapter, Straight from the Heart of GOD

     Pardon me, if it seems like I'm pushing LOVE'S MUSES, I'm really not, but I am pushing what it teaches, the magnificent wisdom of GOD when comes to being a success.  All the work we do in our assigned life's work, must be done with the right motivation.  We can succeed in this world, gain world recognition and fame, but, isn't having GOD's recognition for a job well done far better?   So, what is the right motivation?  Why, it's Love's Muses, of course!  So, what is Love's Muses?  

     Only Katie Lynn Moore can explain it best, so, if you want to know what it is, read on, because nobody can perfectly describe the genius of GOD like she can! From my favorite chapter in the entire FIVE-book series that GOD gave me seven years ago:   


(Setting: A restaurant booth on Valentine's night, the struggling country artist shares his fear and worry about his career and keeping up with what is expected of him,  with the kindergarten teacher he just met a couple hours earlier. )

“Lately, I’ve been blank. I figured my career was over, if not plateaued.  I just assumed my magic was gone for good. I thought I had what it took to go all the way. Then I started to think that I dreamed too big, but you put life back into my dreams. You’re my magic, and I know I can do it now with you by my side. I can get to the top, and I’m taking you with me.”
She came out of his arms and turned around to face him. Her look was one of great disappointment.  “Nicolas Paul, I’m not sure whether to hug you or hit you.”
“When one of my kiddos is way off base, sometimes I just want to slap them upside the head and say, ‘What’s the matter with you?’ I can’t because they are just children, so I hug them instead. You are an adult, so I can slap you upside the head.” Nick’s smile left his face, and he was puzzled and worried.
“What did I say wrong?” He asked, scratching his jaw line.  
“So, you are in this business to get to the top. What if I don’t want to go to the top with you?  What will you do when you get there, but work your ass off to stay there? I won’t be there with you, so if I’m your magic buddy, you’re screwed.” She crossed her arms.
“I’m not sure I am following you. Is this because you don’t want the public life, because you hate the publicity? You want that private life with the brief case in the foyer?  Is this the pink slip of rejection that I’m so used to?” 
Katie’s empathy mode went into effect when she saw the look of rejection on his face. It was a look with which she was very familiar. It was also a look of fear that this could be what kept her from him.  She put her hand in his, locking their fingers, causing a tremendous jolt, to reassure him. 
“I’m not rejecting you, my silly giant bucket of untapped gold, I’m rejecting your ideology. Just wanting to get to the top, is not the kind of man I need, or want. I’ve had one of those.”  
“You make it sound so shallow. It’s not like that. It’s the pressure. The pressure to put out a top third album. The pressure to write hit songs, to satisfy the suits.” 
“The suits?”  She asked
“The executives at the record companies, managers, publicists, people who have invested in me. I can’t let them down.” 
“So, you’re working for them in your craft?”
“No, I want to be successful for me, but if I am unable to come up with anything half-way decent for my third album with Capitol records, they may drop me. Since my first number one, over three years ago, I haven’t gotten any higher than number twenty four. I guess I dreamed too big.” 
She felt so bad for what he was feeling. His face was full of worry and downcast. He had smiled all night long, but right now, he was under the weight of the world. She raised his face with her hands, kissed his hands and then hugged him. She lifted his arm and tucked herself into him, again. 
“Okay, my Tremendous Tower of Talent, do you really want to know the secret to success? Do you want some authentic magic?” She turned her head and looked up to him. 
“Yes, of course.” 
“Seriously, Nicolas Paul, do you want to see your craft reach new heights of genius you never thought possible?” 
“Yes, what is it?” He sat up straight with such hope, and she pulled away, turning to face him. 
“Love’s muses.” He tilted his head, and his eyebrows squished together. 
“Excuse me, what the heck is love’s muses?” He asked. 
“You know what a muse is, right?” 
“Yes, it’s something to contemplate, think deeply about.”
“Right and when you think deeply about something, it can be like a motive or inspiration, right?” 
“Yes, I guess it can work that way.” Nick scratched the back of his neck. 
She got back up on her knees, in true teacher form. “Sit back, my statuesque student of style, let this teacher teach. Cindy’s got a lesson for you. Are you ready to lock this up in your heart, Mr. Super-Talent?” 
“I’m all ears, lay it on me, Teach.”  
“Oh hell, you are way more than all ears. For crying out loud, ears don’t shiver me, but some of your other parts could, or would, if I let them,” she said giggling. 
“Stop it. Don’t go there. Give me your magic, your wisdom,” Princess Cindy.
“Now pay attention, my darling six-foot-male-in-baritone-scale. You have been sold a bill of goods. I’m going to ask you a question but I have to clarify something, first. What is your craft, in its purest form?” Nick hesitated, thinking about how important country music is to him and all the aspects of a career in the industry.  “Well, what is it? Just the bare bones.” She asked. 
“Well, I guess it is music, writing, composing and performing,” he said.
“All right, so your craft is music and its expression, right?”
“Yes, exactly.”  
“Good, now we are getting somewhere. Here is the important question that you must answer from your heart. Are you ready?”
“Yes, Teach, lay it on me.”
“Nicolas Paul, do you love your craft?” He shook his head thinking it was too simple of a question. “Well, do you love your craft? Answer the question from your heart.”
“Yes of course, I love it.”
“Well then, good, just love it, damn it.”  She said those words with such conviction and force. Nick had a puzzled look on his face. 
“I do love it, so that’s all, just love it?” He asked. 
“For the most part yes, but let this teacher explain, because that’s what we teachers do. We find fifty ways to teach the same principle until our student gets it. Now, try to follow me. Are you ready?”
“Yes, go ahead,” 
“Nicolas Paul, if you love your craft with everything you have, than that love becomes the muse, or the inspiration for doing your craft. Then because you love what you are doing, you end up loving the creation that came from you doing your craft. When you love what you have created, then your love for that created thing is the muse for you to continue loving your craft. You see, they feed off each other.  Do you understand?”
“I think so.” 
“Okay, point number two, if you love doing your craft, then your muse is that love, and you should be deliriously happy just because you are doing what you love, and because you love what is produced, period.  Do you get that?” 
“Yes, I do, and you are right.” 
“Point number three, because you love your craft so much, you want to share it with others because it makes you so happy. You think that it will make someone else happy. So, now wanting to make someone else happy also becomes a muse for you to love your craft. You find out that your craft did indeed make someone happy, but the truth of the matter is, your craft is doing far more than that. Like you said, an artist loves to know that their craft is making someone happy, or feel better. Not only did you make someone happy, you have relieved a burden, given a blessing, given someone hope, inspired someone to try something, or encouraged a down trodden person.  Right?”
“Yes, that is what I want to do.” 
“Good, so, then you find out that your craft is blessing others. You develop a love for those you are blessing. That love for them now becomes another muse for the love of doing your craft.”  
“I think I’m starting to really get it, Teach.” 
“Don’t interrupt, unless you raise your hand,” she said giving Nick another reason to laugh. 
“Yes, ma’am, I’m sorry.” 
“Don’t call me ma’am either.  Now, where was I? Oh yeah, so now, your love for that person who needed you, is now one of the muses, inspiring you to love your craft all that much more, creating even more wonderful works of art.  You did not become a super talent by yourself. Practice is one thing, but one must have a gift given to them by God. If He gives you a gift, He has a reason for that. He wants you to bless and benefit those he sends to you by doing and loving your craft. When you put the love of others, the ones God sends you as a priority muse for the love of doing your craft, then you are a success in the eyes of God. Matthew says we should strive to learn God’s definition of success, and live with only that goal in mind. When we do that, then we are making God’s view of success a muse for the love of doing our craft. When you are proving to God that you want to be a success in His eyes only, then the brilliance of God will take your craft to new heights of genius you never even knew existed. You will be amazed at what He creates through you working your craft. Being a success in God’s eyes always brings glory to Him, thus bringing glory to God becomes another muse for loving and doing your craft. Now that you’ve seen the genius of God, you want to keep seeing even more genius from Him, so you keep loving and doing your craft, creating even more works of spectacular art.  Are you still following me?”
“Yes, I’m getting it, Teach.” 
“Good, now we are going to review for the pop quiz tomorrow by listing love’s muses. The proper love’s muses are the love of your craft, your craft expressed, the happiness you get from doing what you love, the benefit to those who need your craft, the love of the people who benefit from your craft, the joy knowing you are a success in God’s eyes, the joy of seeing the genius of God and it’s expression through your craft, your constantly renewed love of God and bringing Glory to God through the loving of your craft. Do you understand this?” 
“Yes, I do, and it’s wonderful, it’s perfect.”  
“Now I have one last point to make before class is dismissed, and this is the most important point, so stay with me, okay?”
“I’m here, lay it on me.” 
“If the love of the prize or the rewards or the accolades ever become one of the muses, then you have become a self-serving artist doing it not just because you love it, but you love what it does for you. Your work will always suffer when you do your craft for your own benefit. Unless we put others first and always consider what we can do for others, we will never see the genius of God in our crafts. The numbers on a country chart, the suits as you say, the publicists, the marketing execs, ACM judges measure success by dollars and cents. If you start measuring success by their standards, then you will lose your magic, which is really God’s magic, expressed through you. There is nothing wrong with receiving a reward for work done well, for the right reasons with the right muses. Those rewards are blessings in their purest form. We must be careful, because sometimes those rewards come disguised to trip us up and make us loose our focus on the proper muses, the love of God, and those God sends to us to bless. The suits and marketing people have no clue about God’s versions of love’s muses.”  
“That’s it, that’s what I’ve done wrong.” 
“I’m not finished, stop interrupting the teacher. Wait until I say ‘class dismissed.” Nick put his hands on his mouth and nodded. 
“Okay. Now, sometimes we will even love some who don’t deserve our love, or who throw it away, yet, we are seen even more as a success in God’s eyes whether those Silly Putty people benefit from us loving our craft or not. Blessings depend largely on the receiver to receive and learn from them and thus passing it forward. Silly Putty people don’t get it and usually are just self-serving. They can’t understand the proper muses of love, because they are Silly Putty.  Class dismissed.” 
She got down from sitting on her knees. She sat straight up, put her hands with her fingers locked together on the table and sat quite prim and proper and looked very educational. Nick raised his hand, making Katie giggle. 
“What is it?”
“May I speak now?” 
“Please do, my opulent ornery honor student.” Nick shook his head and cackled. 
“You are so funny and brilliant, and you’ve hit the nail on the head. It’s such a simple yet amazing and insightful truth. I was putting the prize as my muse, Teach. I’ve been a self-serving artist. I forgot my promise to God.” 
“What promise?” She turned her body to face him. 
“I’ve always wanted a career in country music, for as long as I could remember.  One night, when I was near seventeen years-old. I laid in my bed, and I promised God that if he made me a successful artist, I’d write songs that mattered. I promised to do it for Him and the people who needed to receive a message or blessing from the music. I promised to be different and not just write trendy music about whose boots were under whose bed and whose truck was in whose drive.”   
“I thought that about a lot of your music when Julianna turned me on to your talent. I loved that about most of your songs. The lyrics have depth and are character building. I liked that. Your ballads are sweet and tender. Like I said, your music brightened my day, especially when I was stressed.” 
“Thank you Teach, for reminding me of that promise. The last couple of years, I let the approval of the suits and the accolades be my muse. As a matter of fact, lately paying the bills has been one of my muses,” he said with a sad and worried face. 
“Oh, darling, that is a whole different sermon on the Providential provision of God.”
“Teach, you say you weren’t on God’s Christian Cruise Line to Paradise, but it sure sounds like it to me. Love’s muses sounds like the genius of God, so that’s where you had have gotten it.” 
“No, actually, I stole it from Matthew,” she said with a straight face, then snickered. He broke out in a full belly laugh, shaking his head. 
“You funny teacher, thank you for that lesson. You really are magic, my magic, my Cindy’s Magic.” 

“A great song title, again, and you are most welcome. Now, I have a fee I charge for private tutoring, but seeing how this is your first lesson, I will give you a break. After all, you said you are worried about paying your bills, so just consider that lesson a professional courtesy.”  

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