One of the things that will fry you faster then anything is living a hurried life. It doesn’t matter in what way you live it….full time ministry with no time to stop and think, or a stay at home Mom who is always going and never sitting still to just be. Being hurried will tear you up and spit you out faster then you can wink.
One of the things Mike and I have learned and have struggled worked on keeping in our family life is a rhythm of inward and outward. A time of loving, and living and giving and serving and laughing and being with those we have been blessed to have in our life, and a time of being still and quiet without a ton of running and going, and talking and moving. Just still and quiet. We are making sure to give that gift to our kids as well. I will be the first to say, it isn’t easy, but it can be done. You can be busy without being hurried. You can have lots to do and be at peace doing it if you keep a few VERY important things at the front of your mind at all times. It is all about an inward/outward rhythm. I am writing this whole post as a bit of a reminder for myself. I thought if I need reminding, maybe some one else does too.
Our family has moved into a season full of fecundity. I use that word in honor of Heather Spring, a dear friend in Gainesville, who really ushered us into a season of understanding spiritual disciplines in a deeper way when we were starting to feel pulled to that. We found some resources and then she just solidified everything the Holy Spirit was leading us into with a 12 week class on spiritual disciplines right before we left to move here and plant. If you don’t know what it means look it up I say that in a deeply grateful way. We absolutely love all that God is moving us into but I also know that in times like these it would be very easy to just go, go, go and never stop, stop, stop which would be bad, bad, bad. Yo, I sound like Henny Penny.
Jesus is a very good teacher. He had a beautiful rhythm of being with people and then alone with the Father and the two never ever seemed to get out of balance. Always one and then the other. He was never stressed. Sad yes, but stressed no. He slept through storms, he taught when there was no food. He was never hurried by other people and their problems. Dead people didn’t even rattle him. He even walked past sick people and didn’t stop to heal them. It wasn’t part of what he was supposed to be doing at the given moment. He just did what the Father was doing. Imagine telling a pastor to not go and help someone who was in their path with some issue. Sounds kind of counter intuitive doesn’t it. But Jesus only did what the Father was doing and I think that is a good life lesson to hold onto. He was present with the people he was with and always modeled through his actions. To me, that sounds like the most peaceful way of living that could ever be had.
He didn’t care a hill of beans what other people thought of him. None of the things that rattle us, ever seemed to rattle him. The more I study his life and ask that he would reveal more of himself to me, the more I am in awe of what a great teacher he is. I mean really, really great. As I think about how he really lived his life, I am compelled to follow suit to the best of my ability. So, I am instating a few disciplines into my own life just to make sure I guard the “inward” part of my formation and not let the outward part run me into the ground.
Here are a few things I am moving into. I leave them here for 3 reasons, firstly maybe some of you may need to add these into your life and secondly, any of my local friends or family who happen to read this little blog will have a heads up and not be hurt or ticked that I am seemingly not responding and thirdly, Mike reads this here little space and it saves me 20 minutes of talking when he gets home. I can just say…did you read the blog….and we go from there. I lived a season of 18 months of running like a chicken with my head cut off, responding to everyone elses needs in a crazy business I had that ran out of control. God literally stepped in and rescued me from that mess and ever since then, I have promised to never go back to that kind of slavery every again. So here are my few little things.
- First, I wont text until after school hours…or answer the phone or emails, or comments, or flickr mails or tweets etc. Ever. Period. Wow that sounds harsh…and extreme. I stayed home to homeschool and be with my kids…and if I am answering calls and texts all morning, I am not present with them and they need me. The only person who will ever get through is my hubby. Trust me he is busy enough that he rarely calls during those hours anyway, so when he does it is for a darn good reason. The point is for me to be quiet enough to hear what the Father is saying as I work with our young brood. So you can text or call or email or comment etc. etc. but I wont’ respond until after 3pm Eastern time. Good gravy I know that sounds pretentious, I am not trying to be, I just seem to have a lot of people all over the place touching base. I am honored and love connecting with all of you local and abroad. I will connect with you it just won’t be between 6am and 3pm eastern time.:-)
- Second, I will give our family a day of rest in between days of non rest. Today for instance, we quietly worked, played, cleaned and ran a few errands. Yesterday, we were moving all day, so today we just parked it. It has been refreshing day.
- I have been vary consistent from the outset of our homeschooling journey to make sure we all get some time to ourselves most every day. We all get crazy if we don’t. I think we do children a disservice, if we constantly cater to their needs, telling them what to think and how to act, making sure they are not bored. All this activity forms their little minds in such a way that they have never ever had time to be still and think. I think we deal with a whole culture of people who honestly can’t do it. It is a crying shame. People have looked at me like I am a lunatic when I say we need our quiet time. I don’t mean super spiritual quiet time either like we are all off reading our Bibles or something. I mean QUIET. Think, pray, create, organize your space…whatever. I believe God will show up in that space, and it must be guarded for myself and our children at all costs. Give your mind time to stop racing and just see what comes up. It also models to our children that Mommies are people too and we respect ourselves enough to be away from them and work on ourselves. Maybe just maybe they will keep up the practice when they move on from our home.
- Lastly, I will kiss my husband every day like I mean it. Okay that one was just for me, and like I said before Mike reads this here blog and I just want to make sure he knows what to expect when he walks in the door tonight.
Grace and Peace to all those guarding their inward time…and those who are gonna kiss their spouse like they mean it.