Join me today for a beautiful guest post by Sara Ruut. She blogs about great books, authors, and all manner of reading, as well as encouragement for busy women. See the link at the end of this post.
As Martha worked quickly to prepare a meal for her house full of company, her sister Mary deserted her. Martha went looking for her, and when she found her sister sitting at the feet of Jesus – with the men! – Martha lost her temper.
“Tell her to help me!” she complained to Jesus.
I’m sure she was feeling very overwhelmed with all that needed to be done. After all, they were entertaining the very Son of God! But Jesus didn’t tell Mary to get busy. Instead, He gently rebuked Martha for being so concerned about things that ultimately didn’t matter. You can find this full story in Luke 10:38-42. But can you relate to Martha’s frustration? There’s so much to do, and no one else is jumping in to help.
Your to-do list may not include serving the Lord a meal, but it may be a meal for your family, laundry, and dishes. It could be running your kids to a myriad of activities and games. It could be serving in positions at church that no one else is willing to fill. Perhaps you have all of these to do and more!
In some ways, we do this to ourselves. But we get so busy running from one thing to another that we soon find ourselves distracted from what really matters.
Perhaps you’ve heard Jonny Diaz’s song, Breathe. (If not, you can find it here: https://youtu.be/hnjeMwxFuBA) This song captures so many of our lives!
Running. Busy. Stressed. Frustrated. Distracted.
It’s time to just breathe.
Michael Hyatt (a well-respected virtual mentor for executives and influencers) calls this “margin.” Like the margins on a piece of paper, we need to create margins in our lives. We need room to breathe.
How do we do that?
First it has to be a priority.
We are the only ones who can control our schedules for the day. If we don’t set aside time, if we fill every moment with things that need to be done, no one will make that time in our day for us.
Second, we have to start the day right.
That means planning ahead. It may mean making a list of the priorities for the day the night before. But how we start our day has a significant impact on the rest of the day.
Do you pick up your smartphone before you pick up your Bible? (Ouch! Those were my toes!) If we spend time first with the Lord, our focus for the day will be entirely different than if we start with Facebook. Don’t believe me? Try it…
Third, it’s okay to say “no.”
That can be a hard one. I understand; it has been difficult for me, too. But the more we practice saying it, the more we realize the benefits from using it! When we overcommit, we spread ourselves too thin, and we aren’t doing anyone any good.
And, as hard as it is to tell our kids “no” sometimes, it can be for their good, too. Even though they may plead that this latest activity is something they really want to do, if we allow them to overcommit, they won’t do well, either.
We need to set an example.
Our kids will do as they see us do. When we learn how to breathe, and how to maintain that “margin” in our lives, we will be teaching our kids how to do the same.
God knew we needed down time. He didn’t need to rest on the seventh day of creation, but He knew we needed that example to follow. So do our kids.
Parenting is a busy season. There are so many more things I want to do than I can reasonably accomplish. I doubt I am unique in that.
Before we know it, this time of raising and teaching kids will be behind us. Will we have focused on those things that are most important?
Sarah Ruut is an avid reader of Christian fiction when she’s not busy homeschooling her four tweens and teens. She loves sharing about books and their authors on her blog, Fiction, Faith, and Fun, where you’ll find devotionals as well as reviews of Christian fiction, interviews with amazing authors, giveaways and more! You can connect with Sarah on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Goodreads.
Be sure and visit Sara at her blog and social media sites! You will be glad you did!
Hi! I’m Nicki! Welcome to my blog! I live in Texas with my husband and five children, and a wild assortment of dog, cats, chickens, and ducks. I’m a second-generation homeschooler, a book lover, and history enthusiast. I gush about all of these things on this blog, and I hope to share the love with you! Be sure to follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Join my subscriber list for access to my FREE Download Library:
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