When the Immediate Replaces the Intimate

It has been two months since my last confession blog post. Days have turned into weeks and weeks have turned into months and nowhere in that time have I made the time to write or post here.

This is the longest stretch in the nearly nine years I have been regularly writing, that I haven’t exercised this form of personal reflection, confession, learning, or exposition. The reasons why are varied, but the result is the same. I’m f.r.a.z.z.l.e.d.

So far in 2016, I have only written one blog post (instead of the usual yearly average of 125). I’ve have only read one book (instead of the usual yearly average of over 60). I haven’t been meeting my friend for morning walks; I haven’t called/texted/written to family and friends like I usually do; I haven’t kept my house clean; we haven’t been eating dinners around our table; I haven’t been involved in a Bible study; I have forsaken my beloved morning routine; and there some huge gaps in my own expectations of our homeschooling endeavor. And yet, I’ve felt busier and more tired than ever. (See frazzled, above!)

I’ve not done a great job of managing stress over the past few months. Things are busy and life is full and I have to remind myself that this busyness and fullness is a result of the choices we have made. I also remind myself that this busyness and fullness is a blessing. Tiring, but a blessing. Over the past weekend, I was finally able to succinctly and aptly articulate the root of my strain.

 

In these past few months, I have chosen the immediate over the intimate.

I have been moving from one job, task, or responsibility to the next at warp speed. Efficiency is my name and living up to my own high expectations is my game.

I have been in such a tizzy trying to keep my life in order, that I haven’t been able to look past those tasks to find rest and refreshment (or peace) through the Anchor of my faith.

 

I have been juggling plates in the air, trying my best (in my own strength) not to drop a single one.

This is what I had hoped this school year would look like:

plate-spinner

But instead this has been the reality:

Plate-Spinning-282x300

And in all honesty, it feels like a few of those plates have nearly come crashing down and have broken. Like the lady in the image, I’ve been looking up and had my arms raised but with a totally wrong focus.

I’ve been straining and trying to manage the many plates of life. Instead, and more favorably, I’ve needed to surrender to God’s strength and allow Him to assist my efforts through his grace and mercy.

Thankfully, this doesn’t have to be a lengthy or complicated process. Thankfully, with God, it’s never too late to set things right or back in order. Thankfully, all I have to do is invite him into my chaos and strife and he will answer and not delay.

“…For He is gracious and compassionate, Slow to anger, abounding in lovingkindness” (Joel 2:13)

I wanted to share this reflection as a “first step” to getting back into my rhythm of writing here. I wanted to share this reflection to remind myself of the truth of who God is and what he can do when I move aside. I wanted to share this reflection to encourage you, too, in your quest to not be ruled by the juggling of plates; but rather, to be at rest in the One who loves you most!

 

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