A wise woman would answer, "I don't."
The truth is, as long as the list of "to-do's" was for this week, my list of things I didn't do is even longer. And that's as it should be! It's wasn't all for me to do this week!
For everything I did this week, there is another thing I chose not to do. A phone call I didn't make. A blog post I didn't write. Blogs I didn't read. TV shows I didn't watch. A lunch date I didn't schedule. A sale I didn't shop. A room I didn't decorate. A scrapbook I didn't scrap. A meeting I didn't go to. The list of things the Lord had for me was just long enough for the strength He's given me to complete it. I have found such rest and simplicity in simply tackling what I know I'm supposed to be doing, nothing more. How do I know? I see if it fits into the categories, in order of importance, that I know are in my life. First, is it part of my ministry to my husband? Is it part of my ministry to my kids? My home? Does it take away time from them, or most importantly, my time with the Lord? Is it fulfilling my role as a home schooler? As the Awana secretary? As a daughter? A friend? Does this need to be done right now, by me? Am I sure God asked me to do this, or is it somehow feeding my own selfish ambition?
Throughout my life as a wife and mother, I have read and reread the Proverb that says, "The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands, the foolish one tears hers down." (Pr. 14:1) There have been times in my life when, with my own hands I have torn down my house piece by piece with an overscheduled, frantic, undisciplined pace of life. Ministries, meetings, Bible studies, classes, play groups, homeschool association meetings, supper clubs, sales, errands, etc... all "tools" to build a godly home, but when wielded by my undisciplined hands and for lack of a blueprint (or plan), I was unknowingly, for a season, doing more damage than good. As I've gotten older (and I guess, more tired!) I've realized that it's not all for me to do. It's certainly not all for me to do right now. I don't agree with the popular statement that I hear a lot of women say, "You can have it all, just not all at once." I can't have it all. Furthermore, I don't need it all! Not even spread out across my lifetime! And, that's not a bad thing. What I can have is all that God has apportioned me. And that is always enough. Abundant, even!
Yesterday my daughter received two phone messages asking for babysitting tonight. I decided to let her decide what to do with her schedule, so I left it up to her. What she did was go to our family calendar and see that the next few evenings (including our church night) she (or our family) already had somewhere to be. Friday night would be our family time at home, and she didn't want to miss it. So, she declined the babysitting jobs. She prioritized her roles and scheduled her time accordingly. I think she acted wisely in this situation, and I pray that is evidence that she's learning what I've been learning. (Oh, how I wish I'd learned it as a teen!)
I know there are time management books galore, and how-to-be-a-highly-effective-purpose-driven-Christian books and websites by the hundreds, so this post isn't meant to offer any advice that isn't readily available in many other places. I'm just reflecting on how good it feels, at the end of a busy week, to know and rest in the fact that...
"the boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places."(Ps. 16:6)
I hope you have had a wonderful week!