Often we are so consumed by our hectic schedules that we become slaves to our planners and our never-ending to-do lists. Between work, meetings, appointments, the kids’ sports schedules, school, and housework there is no time left in the day for the most important things in our lives; the things that, at the end of the day, if there were no deadlines, responsibilities, or obligations we would most like to do or invest our time in. We have a tendency in this crazy, busy world to let our schedules get the best of us. We keep going and going, giving and giving until there is nothing left to give. Then we come home to a family, a husband, a wife who want just a little bit of our time and we are so exhausted and so overextended that their wants and needs are met with harsh words or long breathy sighs. There is no time for Legos or snuggles on the couch or long late-night conversations.
How many of us want to be remembered as we are right now? How many of us are leaving behind a legacy we can be proud of? Are we broadcasting the right message to those closest to us? Often the message we are broadcasting is “I am busy,” too busy to play, too busy to listen, too busy to talk, too busy to love.
Many of us have lost sight of our priorities. Are we investing our time and energy into the people or things that matter most? Are we prioritizing time with God and studying His word or is He simply another item to check off of our never-ending to-do list? Do I try to live my life by one simple principle, by asking myself, if tomorrow were my last day on Earth, if my time here was through, have I accomplished what I set out to do? Have I fulfilled my purpose, my God-given purpose? Or have I lost my way?
No matter how hard I try I somehow find myself straying from the path God has set out for me and then something happens that puts it all into perspective. Then when I reflect on those questions, and the answer is no, I reassess where I am and where I lost my way and figure out what I need to do to get back; to fulfill my purpose in becoming the person God wants me to be. Our God has something greater planned for all of us and no matter what struggles we encounter along the way He will redeem us all.
Every day we make conscious choices. Either we choose to spend time with loved ones, making lasting memories or we choose not to. Either we choose to invest in our marriage and give our partner the time and attention they deserve, or we don’t. The choices we make each day are ours to make, and they will define our character and lay down the foundation that will be our legacy.
We need to take control of our lives again, to define our objectives and set our priorities straight. I have been trying to intentionally schedule time with friends lately, not just saying, “Oh, we really should get together sometime and catch up.” I am setting aside time and making concrete plans; I am prioritizing our friendship and declaring the importance that relationship has by making time for them. I have begun to plan out dedicated family time and scheduling uninterrupted, distraction-free date nights with my husband. I have also made sure that once a week I dedicate time to myself. Self-care is vital to emotional health and if I don’t take time to fill myself up emotionally, physically, and spiritually how could I possibly expect to fill others with love and grace and joy?
Lastly, I have dedicated my mornings to spending time with God. I get up, and I share my thoughts and pour out my heart to God in the early morning stillness before the world, and all of the hustle and bustle takes over. I spend time in His word through daily devotionals that speak to me, and I reflect on my life, and I wait. I am learning each day to listen more to what God is trying to tell me, through the noise and the endless chatter, I try desperately to seek Him out, and I wait for Him to lead me.
I am most certainly a work in progress, we all are. I invite those who are struggling with jumping off of the wheel of perpetual busyness to take back control of your lives rather than coasting on autopilot while your life, the one you want to live passes you by. You can do this; we can do it together. It will be tough at times, and at times we will fail miserably but our God is a patient and loving God, and he will wait for us until the end of time because He has faith in us, now let us have that same faith in Him and trust that He’s got this.