Yesterday I did something that I have not done in months… I took a NAP! While that may not seem like much to you (or even something worthy of writing a blog about), it was monumental for me because I finally sat still for a period of time. Ok, I guess I should explain this some more…
My life is divided into three major areas: family/home, faith, and work. There are those moments when two or more of those areas intersect, but for the most part, they live in their separate areas of my life. It truly is a skillful juggling act trying to maintain everything that I need to do on a daily basis because something always needs my attention. In the midst of trying to be a student of the bible, daughter, auntie, friend, sister, working professional, writer, photographer, etc., etc., I am also trying to be a woman who takes care of her health. Those who know me best often joke about my schedule because it is so precise- often detailed down to the minute- just to help me make it through the day. I have alarms for alarms and I am very serious about how I utilize the one resource that God gave that cannot be regained- time. A person can break my heart and I would bounce back faster than if someone wasted my time. Frankly, I have a schedule to keep and even my sleeping habits must conform to the busyness that is my schedule. So, naturally, when I saw that Spring Break was approaching for my county’s school district, I made plans for what each day would look like. I made sure that each activity had the correct amount of allocated time and I made sure to convey my schedule on social media to ensure that I would be left alone when needed.
I mean, really, I am just that particular about my schedule.
However, God is more intentional and deliberate than I am…
Every plan that I had for this five-day weekend (and the days leading up to it) failed. Every one of them. I didn’t exercise the way I wanted to, I didn’t study as much as I would have liked, I didn’t prep as I should have, and I definitely did not go to sleep when I was supposed to. Failure to keep to my strict schedule caused stress and with stress came stress-eating. After days of eating things that I knew I should not have eaten, my body waited until Friday immediately after I preached (thank You, God, for letting me be able to preach!) to begin shutting down, impatiently demanding my attention.
I had peanuts… and I’m allergic to them.
I had chocolate… with dairy… that I’m intolerant towards.
I had fried foods… which does not agree with my body.
And my body had had ENOUGH!
Even now as I type this, I’m cuddled up with a box of tissue, Elderberry drops, and vitamin C drops trying [in vain] to convince my nostrils to let air pass through properly. I do not believe that I am sick sick, but just dealing with sinus issues brought on by stupidity and gluttony.
So back to this nap…
Yesterday was Resurrection Sunday (He is RISEN!) and my church had a Sonrise and 10am service… and I attended both. Saturday night I barely got any sleep because I was coughing so heavily and struggling to breathe normally. After eating some [bomb/delicious] fried potatoes for breakfast at church and then sitting in a chilly sanctuary for service, I was too tired after the benediction had been rendered… causing me to practically run out of the church and to my car. I wanted to go straight home but I needed orange juice and more elderberry and vitamin C drops so to several stores I went. By the time I got home, my poor body was spent. I sat on my chaise lounge and drifted off to a drool-filled (I’m too honest, yall) nap… that felt amazingly good. My Fitbit said that I slept for about an hour and the relaxation that came after the nap was worth every minute.
I felt refreshed.
I felt rejuvenated.
I felt screwed.
I hadn’t completed any of the work that I needed to complete for the day. What about my work for the Thursday night bible study/discipleship class? What about the yearbook- it needs to be submitted by next Monday? What about clothing/meal prep for the week ahead? What about writing my sermon for next Wednesday? NOTHING HAD BEEN DONE!!!
But as I continued to rest there on that chair, none of that mattered. For a brief moment I had listened to my body, not my schedule, and my body was grateful. My body was happy for a moment’s rest… and I was happy to oblige.
So with the rest behind me, I set out today to do all that I needed to do. Gym, Costco run, two appointments, drop off docs at the rental office, read/study, write, work on the yearbook- blah, blah, blah! And, as you can tell since this blog is late, I am running behind. My body had waged another war against my schedule… and had come out victorious AGAIN. What now? What do I do? Deadlines don’t disappear just because I’m sick. Something has to give!
Or, someone has to give.
So I have decided to give; I am going to R.E.S.T.– Reflect and Examine Some Things…. Namely my propensity to say YES and my eating habits.
Here’s where you come in…
Beloved, in a world driven by competition and the desire to be better than the next person, we have begun to ignore the signs of needed rest. We (myself included) get frustrated when traffic is stalled or things don’t work out the way we would like… when that could all just be God’s way of trying to slow us down. Today I implore you to take some time to R.E.S.T., looking at what you can alleviate from your schedule to free up some quiet time for you and the Father.
One thing that I have learned is that when I do rest, God is finally able to talk to me because I can’t get up and run to 5,000,000 other things. Even in my earnest and pure desire to exercise, I created workout time by taking away worship time… and God needs His time with me… and I need my time with Him.
My dear brother and sister, for your spiritual and physical health, I ask one small favor of you after you read these next two sentences: