Saturday, June 28, 2014

Stress, the Robber of Much

This morning as I put it all out there before the Lord in prayer, my mind kept jumping to the next thought before I even finished the previous one.

So much heavy on my heart... on my mind, yet I can't even stop long enough to tell God all about it, much less listen to His response.

When I caught myself doing this (yet again), I simply stopped everything.  I mean everything.  Imagine a child just corrected while doing their schoolwork.  I sat up straight - because you know you always pay attention better when you sit up straight, I folded my hands in my lap, and I listened.  Just listened.  This morning the house was empty, so it was a true quiet throughout the house.

Do you want to know what I heard?  I was actually able to hear the Lord speak to my heart.

What He had to say was not necessarily easy to hear.

Stress can rob us from so much.  Time wasted worrying about things we cannot control, being over committed and not productive, even having too much technology at our fingertips can be stress inducing.

This wasn't the first time the Lord and I have had this conversation.  About four years ago, my husband and I both had a similar talk with Him when He gave us a heart for family ministry and the words "Back to the Basics" ever grained in our hearts.

In our fast-paced, high tech society, getting back to the basics sounds like stepping backwards in time or heading in the wrong direction.  The rat race of life is all consuming!  Work demands and stresses, not enough time at home with the family... or not enough time at work, which creates a host of other stresses.  We must not think of leaving out finances, a category all its own for family stresses.  Throw in time with the kids and other family and friend issues, plus church responsibilities, and the day, weak, month is spent. This leaves you to look back and question. 

     What are you doing? 

     How long can you keep going like this? 

     Are you really being effective at everything you do?

You may not be as lousy at time management as I am.  Kudos to you if you are like my husband, who is an excellent micromanager.  I... am not.  My mind wonders... a lot.  I typically have five or six projects going at once, which take me forever to finish.  When I do actually finish, it usually is not as well as I would have liked.

But that's for another post.... (See, I got distracted just writing this post!)

Back to the Lord's gentle answer... 

See, when your father gives you the answer, He knows you - everything about you - because He created you, for His glory.  So, He knows how it is all supposed to go.  You have a purpose! 

As a busy mom, sometimes it is just nice to be reminded that your purpose does extend further than those days you feel like you are nothing more than a short order cook, chauffeur, or housekeeper.  You were created for more than keeping the kids alive (and loved) and the house standing (which are all very rewarding and important, and a calling themselves from the Lord).  We were created to glorify God in all we do.  He has a purpose for our lives.

In this stage of motherhood, I am finding my days easier to breathe and smile.  My children are getting older, sleeping through the night, and can make their own basic sandwich, if so inclined.  I have learned I cannot do it all.  My body won't let me attempt that anymore.  But sometimes, like today, the Lord still has to remind me that I have to let go of some things in order to have time to do His work well.  He would rather me do a few things well for His glory, than many things ineffectively.

That's no new concept, right?  But sometimes knowing which obligations to give up and which ones to pursue take a little more prayer, especially when those obligations are in the ministry.  Again, a topic for a post on another day.

Simplifying is a term that we hear everywhere.  There are blog posts written daily on ways to simplify every aspect of life.  Stress is ruling the lives of our families, tearing down the comforts of home. 

If you want to simplify your life, save yourself a lot of time searching the Internet for self-help articles and simply open your Bible.  Turn off all the noise and distractions, and simply focus on God.  Ask Him to be the center of your family, not stress.

Saw this quote on Facebook this morning and thought it very appropriate to share:
 May you be blessed today!


  1. Well said. I completely agree. We are often too busy with the urgent to take care of the important

  2. When parents feel comfortable with who they are, they are free to give their children a real, deep, unconditional love. Parenting - it is the prerogative of parents, because no child ever asked to be brought into the world.Mindfulness Mavericks



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