One thing that I struggle with is that I can easily over-commit myself and that often leads to a life that is busy and at times overwhelming. I have good intentions…I want to be there for everyone, do everything for everyone, and never let anyone down (But let’s be honest, that’s impossible.) I want to do all of this because I truly love people and want to help however I can. I just don’t always have a realistic perspective on how much is too much.
Yesterday, my husband Jonathan tweeted, “It’s easier to fill your schedule than fulfill it. Busyness does not equal significance.”
Whoa, that really resonated with me. It’s so true! I can easily fill my up schedule with lots of good things (and write it all out in my awesome planner), but if I fill it up too much with no time for rest, when it comes time to fulfill that schedule…it is near impossible and I am left feeling beat tired.
Even when I do allow time to rest, I rarely can. Many nights when I’m trying to sleep, my mind will race with all the things that I need to do. If I have given myself some downtime and attempting to do something fun or relaxing, I am often flooded with feelings of guilt regarding the “more important” things I’m not doing with that time.
This is a problem. And I know it’s something that many people struggle with. Busyness almost seems like a core value in our society. But In order to truly live a life of peace, we need to work on the art of being still.
“Be still and know that I am God.” – Psalm 46:10
When I think of this issue, I am reminded of the story of Mary and Martha in the New Testament (Luke 10:38-42.) Jesus and his disciples visited the home of two sisters, Mary and Martha. During their visit, Martha was busy making preparations and being the hostess with the mostest, while Mary was sitting at Jesus’ feet listening to him. Martha got irritated with her sister, and said to Jesus, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.” But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.”
What a wonderful example this story is. Martha was keeping herself busy, and felt like she had to earn the approval of Jesus by striving and doing all of these things. But her sister, Mary, discovered the best thing…the art of being still at Jesus’ feet and listening to his voice.
In a world filled with Marthas (and many of us striving to be like the other Martha), I want to remember to be like Mary and learn to be still at Jesus’ feet…surrendering to Him…listening…and truly resting.
Is this something you need to work on as well? What are some practical things you can do to practice rest in your own life?