I finally got a chance to sit down today after a hectic week filled with midterms and several long writing assignments, alongside my usual, busy work schedule and ministry commitments. It’s been a week of little sleep, lots of jumping from place to place, too much work, and too little exercise.
Not surprisingly, yesterday brought a small anxiety attack as I found myself drowning in work, unprepared for the next day’s (today’s) calculous midterm, with an inkless printer and 5 hard-copy assignment due in less than an hour.
I need to cut something out of my schedule, I thought to myself. But I failed to realize that I already had.
Rest. Oh yeah, that thing. I had pretty much never taken– let alone gotten– a chance to rest the entire week. If I was sitting, I was on my laptop typing essays and emails. If I was sleeping, it was briefly. If I was reading the Bible, it was in preparation for Bible study. If I was praying, it was God, please save me from this week. I can’t do this on my own.
I was right, this week was not easy on my own. In the absence of God. Let me correct that, in the neglect of God.
The things I had eliminated from my week– my solitude and rest and running and prayer and worship– usually fill me up. And what I replaced them with– work and work and work and more work– depleted me.
Now, I think busy times in my life are good. I think they force me to draw nearer to God and rely on Him for strength and peace and joy until I make it through. But when God is not the center or I allow Him to escape from my mind, busyness just becomes stress and anxiety and worry. All of which acknowledge that I do not trust God’s hand in my life.
And the result of my anxiety attack last night, you ask? I ended up walking through our campus arboretum for 15 minutes, praying to God as I walked, before a 6pm class. At that point, I really knew there was nothing else I could do and it was no longer in my own hands, nor had it ever been. It was a good thing.
So, now that my week is (pretty much) over and I finally have a chance to sit and blog and read my Bible and unwind, I reflect on some major flaws in my week. Looking forward, I know that my life isn’t going to get less busy– although I may not have that many midterms and essays combined in one week again– so I need to plan accordingly.
I need to recognize the things that are hindering me from focusing on God amidst my busyness, perhaps my phone, perhaps my worry, perhaps a mind focused on what’s next to be done.
I need to recenter on the works and the gifts in my life that I know are glorifying to God. I need my schoolwork and leadership and attitude and anxiety level to reflect the amount of God’s great love and grace in my life.
I need to cut things out and say no when necessary, if I know it’s going to make me too busy for God.
I need to have a humble and joyful spirit in doing God’s kingdom works, like leading a Bible study or talking about Him, or it really benefits no one. Not me. Not others. Not God.
This post may or may not be applicable to your life, I don’t know. It was more of just a way to vent and reflect a bit.
Will you be praying for me, as I move forward, that I can allow God to shine in my life regardless the amount of stuff I have to do?