I enjoy being involved with various activities through church and with friends but when those activities get in the way of my time spent with God, my family, and general up-keep on my house, I feel the need to scale back a bit.
A typical day finds me waking up the in the morning and immediately fighting the clock. I have to rush and get Hans breakfast, cleaned up, and dressed for the day, and then I have to wake up Caroline (remember, she sleeps in like a 15 year old...) and get her dressed and in her car seat and we head out to either run errands, attend MOPS, Bible Study, or a play date. We don't arrive anywhere we're going on-time (something that really bothers me as I always strive to be on time). We don't end up coming back to the house until close to lunch time and I usually bring in two crying kids because they are so hungry and tired. After I hurriedly make lunch for Hans and myself, it's off to bed for nap time while I attend to Caroline to coax her into a sleep in her room. I end up feeling exhausted and unproductive. If both kids have a good nap, I can usually put in a load or two of laundry and clean up a bit, but if they don't have a good nap, I find myself greeting Tom at the door ready for a hand-off on child care and the house is definitely not welcoming or hospitable for my husband who has been working so hard for us all day.
Not. my. ideal.
In my Bible study, we are reading a book, "Lies Women Believe" by Nancy Leigh DeMoss. Don't let the title fool you, it's a great book and not at all like a soap opera. (Coming up next week on...Lies Women Believe...duh duh duh...). Every chapter we read speaks right to my heart. Last week the chapter we were reading was titled, "Lies Women Believe About....Priorities". See what I mean about speaking right to me? The book talked about lies many women believe about their priorities and then counters it with the Truth from the Bible. For example, many women believe the lie that "I don't have the time to do everything I'm supposed to do" (like, taking care of the kids, laundry, meal planning, keeping up with housework, being there for your husband etc). But the Truth to this lie is that there is time in every day to do every thing that God wants me to do.
Not my agenda. What God wants me to do.
If you could tell from the first paragraph in this post, most days, I'm left feeling frustrated at what little things I accomplished. I found this quote summed it up completely,
"The frustration comes when I attempt to take on responsibilities that are not on His agenda for me. When I establish my own agenda or let others determine the priorities for my life, rather than taking time to discern what it is that God wants me to do, I end up buried under piles of half-finished, poorly done, or never-attempted projects and tasks. I live with guilt, frustration, and haste, rather than enjoying the peaceful, well-ordered life that He intends."
So, there it is, I need to keep my time with God (in devotions and prayer) sacred so that I can discern what it is He wants me to do. One thing is for sure, He has created me to be a wife and mother and right now, my priorities are to Him, my husband, and my kids (in that order).
In Luke 10:38-42 when Jesus visits with Mary and Martha, it says that Martha "was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made" while Mary was sitting at Jesus' feet listening to all He had to say. Jesus told Martha, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."
I can benefit from being a lot more like Mary and a little less like Martha!