Friday, October 23, 2009

Busy vs. Fruitful

I remember a time, not so long ago, that I thrived on adrenaline.  I was once told by my son that I have a work ethic on steroids! While I do enjoy feeling accomplished and seeing the fruits of my labor, I am finding more and more that I want to be more discriminating about how "work" is defined. What it comes down to for me is Am I working on something to be working on something? or Am I going about my work as I am instructed in Scripture, to glorify my Lord and Savior? I think that being wise in our labor requires time to meditate and think about exactly how and why we are doing any particular task. Now, I realize that I don't necessarily need to pray over doing the dishes (some nights I think I should since I am one of the three women in America without a dishwasher!), but even running errands, completing household chores, schooling my son and running my company operate so much better when I am focused on Christ from the start. I am a list maker, which helps me keep an overloaded brain on the right track, but even my list works better if I examine it before I begin and discern whether I am spending my time in a way that is pleasing to God.

I used to feel guilty if I took time to read (something I love) or sat around talking with my son. I could seriously feel the time ticking by and I would think of all of the things on my list that weren't getting done. Well, as I have sent one child off to college and only have one more at home, I have come to realize that the toilet can be cleaned a day later but my relationship with my son requires "now" time. John Paul told me recently that while this no longer occurs and hasn't in the past few years, that there was a time that he would avoid me if I was working and he was not. He said that he knew if I was working on something and he wasn't, I would put him to work! Now, a solid work ethic is a beauty to behold in my eyes, but having your child afraid of approaching you because you won't take a minute to stop and share that moment with him is not something any mom ever wants to hear. I am glad to know that he no longer feels that way and I no longer act that way.

Time doesn't stop because we behave foolishly and we certainly can't get that time back. So, for today, I will try to do as God pleases and follow His lead. If my list is part of His agenda, so be it. If not, it will still be there tomorrow.

God is good. He grows and refines us. I don't like to see my faults but I love that even through them, He loves me and He uses even my weaknesses to draw me nearer to Him.

May your list today include precious time with family and friends, a phone call that needed to be made, a relationship restored, a random act of kindness or a well timed note of encouragement. Bless you as you go about blessing others!

In Him,

Note: Did you know that Abraham Lincoln wrote poetry? Intrigued? Check out my Epi Kardia blog about using primary source materials when teaching. Even if you're not a teacher, you might enjoy it if you like history.

1 comment:

  1. I can relate, but am learning that lesson as well. I know that, by nature, I am an overly responsible person, but I can see the hours ticking away with our children under our roof. I am learning to let some of those things go so I can just be more available for investing in relationships. I hate not having a clean floor and I don't really enjoy sitting and watching a movie very often at all, but I can tell it means the world to my family when I can let my list go and be with them.

    Thanks for your thoughts - they are an encouragement for me to press on!


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