Someone just asked me how I am navigating such a busy season in life. When they asked, the question lodged into me, like an arrow hitting it’s mark. How am I navigating this season without losing my sanity?
In a week and a half, I have a kid getting married (to a super awesome lady!). In one week, we have family flying in from all over the country. My kitchen is under construction, and we are the construction crew. It won’t be done, but at least we’ll have counters (and MAYBE a stove). The brand new concrete counter tops that my amazing husband just poured, still need sanded, which means I can’t even start the deep cleaning until they are sanded. Then the cleaning must go deep! Oh and someone gifted us a cow that we had to process ourselves. It is quartered in a cooler in the barn right now. We were up until 4 a.m. last night processing meat, and likely have a couple more all-nighters to pull before it’s in the freezer and our load is lighter. Oh, and in my stupidity and ignorance, I offered to bake 5 pans of homemade dinner rolls today (what in the world was I thinking?), and to bake two turkeys, and enough Potato Bread for Simon and Alycia’s reception (sometimes I have momentary losses of sanity!). We also have the usual mess, which in our case is probably much greater than a “normal” persons, due to the fact that we have had construction projects going for years on end, and I am ADD (thus I pick something up to put it away and it lands in a different room, but not where it belongs). I am probably missing a few components making this season extra crazy, because when you are carrying boulders, you forget about the pebbles.
I was standing amidst this debris when a friend asked me how I am navigating. It seemed like she thought I must be surviving okay, because a normal person might be sucking their thumb in the corner by now, and I was still standing (weak-kneed as I may be). It made me pause. How am I handling it? I mean, the emotions of a son getting married ought to be enough to take me down, right? And somehow, I just keep picking up the plow.
In my pause, I realized three things keeping my head above water: Rest, Thanksgiving, and Diligence.
Rest. It was Martin Luther, I think, who said something about being so busy today that he needed to spend an extra hour in prayer. That always stuck with me. If I don’t rest, I burn out. And rest becomes even more vital in seasons of busyness.
Thanksgiving. These are all gifts, right? A new daughter! A new kitchen! A hopefully-soon-to-be clean house. And a freezer full of beef! How thanksgiving filters my sight to see the gift and the Giver, rather than the chaos in my field of vision! This isn’t just true for busyness, but also suffering and struggle. Thanksgiving narrows my focus onto what brings light and lifts darkness!
And Diligence. In this season, I just have to keep my hand on the plow. Keep asking God what’s next. I can’t look at all the projects at once. I have to do the thing I am doing right now, all the way to completion,THEN look for the next project. If I look at it all at once, I am paralyzed with overwhelm. I literally get nothing done! If I make a list, and let the good Lord direct what comes now, ignoring what comes tomorrow, or in an hour, my head doesn’t usually feel like a spinning top about to loose itself from my neck.
So, there you have it. There’s my answer and advice for anyone else battling overwhelming circumstances, but I would be amiss if I forgot to mention the most vital component of my sanity… GRACE! God Almighty is keeping my head above water. When I look at myself or my circumstances, I am a disaster, sucking my thumb in the corner. When I look to Him, and trust His ability to multiply time and move mountains, then whatever gets done gets done, and I can be at peace. Because rest isn’t just sitting on your butt. Rest resides deep in the soul!