Two weeks ago, work finally slowed down and I have enjoyed several days off. The first several days I was battling a bad cold and so it was nice to have most of the week off and time to rest and recuperate. I’ve been looking forward to work slowing down some and I was trying to keep my ‘to do’ list short so I would have plenty of time to journal, blog, work on an article and my book edits, and maybe even have some time to visit and catch up with friends. I was also eagerly anticipating spending my early mornings taking long, quiet, walks and doing a little extra Bible reading. I would have time to relax and truly enjoy all the beauty and wonder of summer – or so I thought.
But Saturday, as a second week without much work was drawing to a close, I was again wondering where the week went. I did send a few long overdue letters and cards to a couple of distant friends and a letter of encouragement to my kids, but there are still letters and cards that remain unsent. I had a few phone conversations with close friends and family members and spent one day with dear friends, but more than one promised lunch date with other close friends remains undone and unplanned. Gone were the grandioso plans to make great strides on my book edits – revisions were made and sent back to my editor but not much faster than the pace I’ve managed to maintain even while working. Early mornings were given to extra chores instead of long walks while blog posts and journal entries were squeezed around yard, garden, barn, and household tasks with only a little more time and attention than they are given when I am working. I rested a little more, wrote a less than I planned, and daily struggled with a barrage of distractions that bartered for my time. There always seems to be countless household tasks that go unnoticed and undone for days, weeks, and even months at a time that I somehow feel must be done when I am off. I often remind myself that in the grand scheme of things they matter little, but some of them I conquered anyway while others remained undone and the days came and went and the weeks passed quickly by.
During these past weeks I realized there will always be a struggle to do those things my heart yearns to do. Quite often I must decide what the best use of every precious moment is and many times the decision will be between what is good and what is better. I am sure there will always be a battle against daily distractions and assumed responsibilities whether they are related to work and financial obligations or the everyday tasks of running a household.
Saturday I again welcomed the opportunity to carry the mail and this week there are other welcomed opportunities to earn the income I need. My daily battle to stay quietly content and rest peacefully knowing God is in control is a surprise even to myself. I struggle not to complain when work combined with the daily responsibilities of my household make for long days and short nights and many times I must be determined to do what lays heavy on my heart even when I am weary. But when work allows a reprieve, I worry if there will be enough income to outlast the month. Instead of rejoicing that I finally have the time to do those things I love to do, I battle against a barrage of daily distractions and complain that there is never enough time. I like to think it would be easier to write without the burden of work – and perhaps it would – but eliminating outside work and the responsibility of earning an income does not completely eliminate the daily distractions that can steal my time and leave me disappointed and discouraged at what I’ve really accomplished.
My real battle isn’t work, it is an inner conflict between what I know to be true and a doubtful self that is never satisfied with the abundance it is given but always frets over both time and money. How I long for a heart that could forever conquer self and truly rest in the knowledge that God is sovereign and His provision is always enough. He provides exactly what I need in both time and money – each in season and in perfect balance. So once again, as I must do over and over, I remind myself to rejoice and be glad for God is glorious and sovereign and I am abundantly blessed.