In the past few years, every time I have asked someone how they were doing the response I get most of the time is, “Good! But busy!”
Is this response so we don’t have to talk about what is really going on in our lives? The despair? The depression? The struggling relationship? The stress? The exhaustion?
As I’ve pondered on this for myself, I realized that I often answer the question, “How are you?” with the same response that people give me. “Good. But busy.”
Hmmmm….. Perhaps I should be more specific:
I’m alive. My foot is hurting. My prayer life is improving. My marriage is going well. I am excited about getting new puppies. I am stressed about my business. I pooped today.
I think sometimes we shy away from telling the truth because we have fear about what others think, or we think they really don’t care how I’m doing. Something to think about…
So, back to being too busy. Do we fill up our time because we don’t want to miss out on anything? Or we want our kids to have alllllll the experiences? Or we don’t want to have a few moments alone with our thoughts because that could just be really bad?
I think our culture has an “illness of spirit” as Eugene Peterson says. We don’t know how to rest anymore. We have to DO. IT. ALL!
This summer, God called me to a season of rest. And I didn’t like it one little bit. I like to go and do and be! I like to hike and wake-board and do all the fun summer things. But God had other plans for me. I injured my foot. Twice. Because he called me to rest, and I didn’t listen. So, he forced me. Sigh again.
And being in this place of rest has allowed me to do some self-evaluation about my life, my activities, my self-care, and how I can show up for God as my best self. I have learned that there is a time for getting it done and a time for putting the enormous to-do list to the side and just take a nap. My new mantra (and screen saver) says, “Persist when you need to. Rest when you need to.” It’s reminding me every day to listen to my body and God, and do what needs to be done. Sometimes, rest is what needs to be done.
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time for love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.” (NIV)
So, what season are you in? Is God calling you to a season of rest from the busyness? Or is God calling you to put down one thing so he can prepare you for another? Or are you in a season of get it done?
Wherever you are, I invite you to take a few moments, a few breaths to just be with God – in this season. Be here now.