“Who is your audience? Remember who you’re writing to.” That was kind of the catchphrase of today. I was at an all day writing seminar put on by Mr. Andrew Pudewa from Institute for Excellence in Writing. 6 hours! I was in a room for 6 hours! Now, I am a very quiet person in real life, and sitting or staying in one place for long periods of time really doesn’t bother me, however, 6 hours was a long time.
Now, to be honest, I really didn’t know why Mom wanted me to go to this class. Hunter, my brother, I could understand. He is college bound. Me, on the other hand, not so much. I wasn’t sure how a 6 hour long workshop about how to write an essay for the SAT/ACT tests would benefit me. I was surprised, though, that I was able to ignore the SAT part and still get a lot out of it. It stretched my writing skills. We did a faux essay, 25 minutes, given subject and all. We wrote two of those. I will write out my first one for y’all to read. The given topic is in bold.
“Tyler Durden, protagonist of the movie Fight Club, postulated, ‘The things you own end up owning you.’ Jennifer Lopez, on the other hand, espouses the theory, ‘Don’t be fooled by the rocks that I got/I’m still, I’m still Jenny from the Block.’ What is your view on whether your possessions and education define who you are? Plan and write an essay in which you develop your point of view on this issue. Support your position with reasoning and examples taken from your reading, studies, experience, or observations.”
What do you take with you when you leave this world? Nothing. You take nothing. You leave this world as naked and possessionless as the day you entered it. So, why then do we even own possessions? Why do we work so hard to have things we won’t keep?
King Solomon struggles with these questions in Ecclesiastes. In chapter 1, verses 2 and 3 he says, “Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity. What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun?”
Why then do we strive for things of vanity? Do they make us who we are? Do they give us status in this world, this sinful world?
Some people believe that the things they own define them. If they drive a pricey car, own jewels, have a few big screen TVs, they are seen differently by the world. If a kid in school has the newest gaming system, or the most name brand clothes, who flocks to him/her? It’s like it instantly makes them popular.
On the other hand, a few, a very few, people believe that it’s not necessary to own all of that “junk.” I believe that they are right in believing so. I believe that possessions are controlling, that they become idols in our lives. I also believe that the desires to have popularity and status can, and often do, become idols as well.
Education seems to also give status. If someone has a higher degree, or the most degrees, or what to the top university, they are immediately put on a pedestal. Funny thing, you don’t take your education with you when you did either.
So, what is important? What is worth striving for? Reaching the lost. Helping them to see beyond owning possessions or having the best education. Souls of people, now there is something you do take with you.
Now, there are some things I would change about this now, having gone through the class. This was our very first project, so I didn’t really know what I was doing. I think it turned out pretty well. And I am pleased with a word count of 318 in 25 minutes.