I’ve been doing a series on how to find rest in the midst of our busyness. I’m doing this series because, ultimately, I need this advice more than anyone else. I do my devotionals in the morning, but honestly, I just can’t relate to what I’m reading. All I can think about is the endless list of tasks I have to complete, the people I have to see, and the events I have to attend. Whenever I have any amount of free time, it usually involves catching up on what I put to the side, what I promised I would do whenever I had time. What I really need more than anything else is for someone to give me practical tips on how to be still even though I’m busy.
If I had to give advice to myself, I would say this: I’m being too hard on myself.
I know I mention this a lot, but my life has been busy since I graduated college. I wrote a post when I graduated college about how I didn’t know what God had planned for me. About six months later, the roller coaster began. You can read about the ups and downs of my life in other posts, especially this one. For the sake of this post, I will let you in on my current situation. My husband and I have been married for almost seven months. Due to the fact that we both have full-time jobs and long commutes to and from work, we are exhausted by the time we get home. Not to mention we are both involved in various ministries during the week that allow us just enough time to stop home and eat a quick bite for dinner. Oh, and yeah, I’m trying to publish a book, which involves proposing to various literary agents.
The residual effects of our busyness are why I feel so guilty for being constantly on-the-go. We don’t get to see our families on a regular basis, and the desire and obligation to see them hangs over our heads. Our place of living is not as spotless as it was when I had all the time in the world to clean it. Seeing crumbs on the floor, piles of laundry on our bed, and dishes in the sink makes me feel like I’m not taking care of the place that God has given me. Plus, the overarching nagging of my responsibilities causes me to be irritable and impatient. I constantly hear this ringing in my ear, telling me that I should be doing things more efficiently, that I’m not being a good wife or a good family member or a good employee.
So, I shall take this moment to ask myself: What is the problem here, the busyness, or that little voice in my head telling me I’m not good enough?
My husband and I are still newlyweds. My apartment is still new to me. I’m still trying to figure out my schedule. And in the midst of all of the “newness,” God’s grace is with me. He is not angry at me for failing to understand everything right away. It takes time to learn how to be a great wife, an efficient house-cleaner, a brilliant employee, and all of the other roles that God has entrusted to me. For now, all God expects of me is to lean on Him and be patient with myself.
If you find yourself feeling guilty for not having everything figured out, my word of encouragement to you is to be patient with yourself. Even if others expect you to be an expert (fill in the blank), you cannot be without practice. It may involve making mistakes; you may have to discover several ways that don’t work before you discover the one way that works for you. All that matters is: you’re not alone, and you will get through this.
My challenge this week for you is to affirm yourself. Instead of focusing on what you are doing wrong, write down what you are doing right. Thank God for the ability to do those things well. I would also challenge you to ask God to help you in the process of figuring it out. It will take time. Be patient with yourself and humbly ask God for strength to endure the transitional period. God, through Jesus Christ, understands our weaknesses and gives us grace and mercy when we need it. Ask God for that grace when you hear that voice that says you are not good enough.