Lent is almost here and I have decided what I want to give up – I want to give up busyness for the season. It will not be easy because this is a very busy season for us with travel commitments coming up, with important decisions to be made about the semester away program at the Mustard Seed Village and with new book projects I am working on.
I am currently reading Parker Palmer’s book and this quote hit me between the eyes. Am I too busy to live my own life? Only if I value it so little that I am willing to surrender it to the enemy (72)
This is not the first time that my life has tended to become too busy, in fact this is a constant challenge for me but what is probably new is that I am trying to address this issue with greater determination. At the last retreat Tom and I did after Christmas I wrote down a list of those things that indicate I am getting too busy and I am trying to take notice. I have also written down a new list of what I want my priorities to be – primarily based on the balance I talk about in Godspace. I want to make sure that the things that really matter in life – relationships with God and others, daily walks, relaxation in the garden, and just quiet evenings at home don’t get pushed out by the tyranny of the urgent.
So my question for you today is – what is the life God calls YOU to live? What changes do you need to make for that to be possible?
So will you help keep me accountable during Lent? And if so what would you like me to help keep you accountable for?
Is it possible to completely give up worry? Stress? I’d like to do that. Or maybe I’ll just worry about why I can’t. 🙂
Good to see a picture of your smiling faces. I wish I could share a cup of coffee with you two. I hope you’re well.
Jason, now that is a really good one to work on. I have found that rather than giving up worry however I need to focus on the positive – counting God’s blessings, learning to be grateful for the moment, reminding myself of the faithfulness of God are all ways that have helped me to at least cut down on my worry and stress. Why not think about a gratitude journal for Lent? I think that it is a wonderful way to cut down on stress.
I like you want to slow from the pace – the busyness – of the world and walk at God’s pace through Lent making time to talk and share and read and so grow.
Stephen – I love that “walk at God’s pace”. I think that most of us need to slow down just so that we have time to recognize what God’s pace looks like. May this Lent be a time of true discovery in this area
Thank you for your reply, our Bishop’s gave us Janet Morley’s book, ‘the heart’s time – A pem a day for Lent and Easter and today – Ash Wednesday we have R.S.Thomas’ poem The bright field and one line struck me ‘Life is not hurrying on to a receding future’
Stephen I love that – we so often have our eyes focused on the wrong thing. It fits so much with a line from Ann Voskamp’s book. Life is too important to live busy.
I am feeling pulled to give up, on hourly basis, the “shoulds”. My goal the lenten season is to soak in His Presence more than ever before! From that, I believe what needs to be done, will be done, and the unimportant will be left behind. At times, I wonder if He is preparing me to go home to heaven, and that is not yet my desire, as much as it will be wonderful to see Him! But so many things that once meant so much to me, as well as other pursuits of happiness, are leaving. I simply want more of Him.
Rita, soaking in God’s presence is, in my experience, a prerequisite to growth and new fruitful ministry. That does not mean that God is preparing you to go home but he may also be preparing you for the most fruitful season of your life
Bowled over and knocked to attention simply by the question. Life so full of “important” and “must get done” and “he/she needs” that I rarely get to the things I believe I’m called to. Turning over several stones as I pray this through, for the things that keep me busy and seem to block the way also seem part of the overall picture. But perhaps need to be left again for a season….
I understand exactly what you mean – one of the favourite prayers I wrote last year was – may I never be too busy to listen, may I never be too tired to pray and unfortunately I don’t always listen to myself as I pray it
Really? In this coming lenten season I`m still busy to think but I don`t
know what is that things in my mind even in my heart???
Onething I am sure of..I do my best my relationship to the LORD.
Sounds good but when we are too busy it is often challenging to focus on our relationship with God.