Anxious

Do you ever have those hours, or days, or seasons when you just feel anxious? You can’t put your finger on it, but there is a buzz. Your senses are heightened though you feel in a fog; life has overtaken you a bit and your to do list is a mile long but the things you want to get to are getting pushed out by the things you have to take care of right now.

The tyranny of the urgent, I think they call it.

I remember taking a Franklin Covey class way back when and they helped organize your “to dos” in 4 categories, a matrix of sorts:

7h-matrix

It really is very helpful, but what happens when it feels like everything falls into category I: “the urgent and important” and you cannot think straight or sit down until it is all accomplished?

My matrices have been blurred and my adrenaline is leaky and I cannot slow down for the life of me. The conundrum? Much of what I am “doing”{email inbox clean, every drawer organized, house de-cluttered, all unused/unworn clothing donated or sold etc., etc…} was ironically motivated by “The Year of Rest“! In addition, the speaking engagements I have said yes to {5 over the course of 2 weeks} were taken on with the hopes that they would drive me to the feet of Jesus {which has been true} and yet it all adds up to more hours and energy than I seem to possess.

I get that we all have the same hours in the day. I know that I am no more important than anyone else. I want to put people first {particularly 3 little men and one slightly larger one that occupy my space with me} and I never want to answer the question “How are you?” with an exhausted “I’m just so busy” as if it is a badge of honor and something someone else did to me because I am the one that said YES to it all! And in case I forget, I must admit that saying yes to 3 lovely little boys is a big yes to laundry and carpools and puzzles and meal non-planning {stress and cereal at seven anyone!?} and a few other details that I would like to put in the IV category but am pretty sure that if I place them there and put them off they will immediately become deemed “crises” and leap right back under the “urgent and important” heading.

And so all the wonderful things I said yes to are running their course.

And I am a little bit tired.

Don’t you feel sometimes as if you could just freeze the rest of the world, ship your people out for a day or two, throw away everything you haven’t touched in the months since you moved in, scour your toilets and get a nap, that the world would be a better place?

Lest you think I am complaining, I really am not. I am just acknowledging that we get tired sometimes. And a little anxious. And a lot behind. And we feel like the world is sitting on our spine. I think I am getting shorter, which at 5″3′ I cannot afford. Especially since rupturing my achilles has made heels out of the question for a time.

And I hear things like how Jesus offers to trade my heavy burden for his light one, and how he has offered me rest which sounds so lovely, but I would really just like for him to take the carpool and the bills for a couple days. And maybe consign all my boys’ clothes.

And today, after getting my boys in bed far too late and with lists and plans and boxes of clothes and toys all around me, I looked longingly at my computer screen, and heard him say, “Come sit with me.” Often, I don’t slow down enough to hear this invitation until the wee hours of the morning. But something in me gave in and I sat down and began to write the very thing you are reading now. Somewhere in the middle of this my shoulders crumpled and my soul sighed, “I can’t do all this!”

And instead of a pep talk and a “Yes, you can!” he simply responded with, “I know.”

“I know.”

Aren’t those the most freeing words?

He knows. He knows when I sit and when I stand. He knows my every thought. When I am far and when I am near.

He doesn’t just give me rest, HE IS MY REST. 

I cannot say that there are fewer things on my to do list, or less boxes around me. But I will say that this past hour and a half was the sweetest of sacrifices. I am feeling a little lighter and a little taller perhaps. And tomorrow will be a new day. Three minutes from now to be exact.

So I will leave you with this, my most favorite of Psalms in the most beautiful translation. If you can, read it very slowly and perhaps out loud and linger over each word. Speak it as an act of worship and ask the Holy Spirit to make every word of it true for you today in your deepest of places.

Carry on…

em-signature

Psalm 139 {The Voice}

For the worship leader. A song of David.

O Eternal One, You have explored my heart and know exactly who I am;
You even know the small details like when I take a seat and when I stand up again.
    Even when I am far away, You know what I’m thinking.
You observe my wanderings and my sleeping, my waking and my dreaming,
    and You know everything I do in more detail than even I know.
You know what I’m going to say long before I say it.
    It is true, Eternal One, that You know everything and everyone.
You have surrounded me on every side, behind me and before me,
    and You have placed Your hand gently on my shoulder.
It is the most amazing feeling to know how deeply You know me, inside and out;
    the realization of it is so great that I cannot comprehend it.

Can I go anywhere apart from Your Spirit?
    Is there anywhere I can go to escape Your watchful presence?

If I go up into heaven, You are there.
    If I make my bed in the realm of the dead, You are there.
If I ride on the wings of morning,
    if I make my home in the most isolated part of the ocean,
10 Even then You will be there to guide me;
    Your right hand will embrace me, for You are always there.
11 Even if I am afraid and think to myself, “There is no doubt that the darkness will swallow me,
    the light around me will soon be turned to night,”
12 You can see in the dark, for it is not dark to Your eyes.
    For You the night is just as bright as the day.
    Darkness and light are the same to Your eyes.

13 For You shaped me, inside and out.
    You knitted me together in my mother’s womb long before I took my first breath.
14 I will offer You my grateful heart, for I am Your unique creation, filled with wonder and awe.
    You have approached even the smallest details with excellence;
    Your works are wonderful;
I carry this knowledge deep within my soul.
15     You see all things; nothing about me was hidden from You
As I took shape in secret,
    carefully crafted in the heart of the earth before I was born from its womb.
16 You see all things;
    You saw me growing, changing in my mother’s womb;
Every detail of my life was already written in Your book;
    You established the length of my life before I ever tasted the sweetness of it.
17 Your thoughts and plans are treasures to me, O God! I cherish each and every one of them!
    How grand in scope! How many in number!
18 If I could count each one of them, they would be more than all the grains of sandon earth. Their number is inconceivable!
    Even when I wake up, I am still near to You.

19 I wish You would destroy all the wicked, O God.
    So keep away from me, those who are thirsty for blood!
20 For they say such horrible things about You,
    and those who are against You abuse Your good name.
21 Is it not true that I hate all who hate You, Eternal One?
    Is it not true that I despise all who come against You?
22 Deep hatred boils within me toward them;
    I am Your friend, and they are my enemies.
23 Explore me, O God, and know the real me. Dig deeply and discover who I am.
    Put me to the test and watch how I handle the strain.
24 Examine me to see if there is an evil bone in me,
    and guide me down Your path forever.


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