This summer the pace of life felt overwhelming full of busyness.
There was constantly family needing attention and connection, requests from friends across the country and globe, work opportunities, organizations worthy of time and money, mentors pushing me beyond my current worldview, and disciples ready to grow and learn, if only there were time to teach.
In Shauna Niequist’s article, Is Busyness a Drug?, she says,
“I use busy-ness to make me feel numb and safe, the way you use a drug, and I use busy-ness as a way of explaining all the things I dropped, didn’t do well, couldn’t pull together, as a defense.”
This quote pulls at my heartstrings as it helps me realize what I’ve been fighting—an addiction. And yet, in the midst of the busyness and chaos, I found myself looking for more of the drug. There’s always a sound rationale for the initial willingness to take something new on; I want to get to know them, they’re busier than me and therefore need more help, it’s a worthy cause. It always starts with the best intentions.
Overcommit, stress, let down, justify.
I’ve been living in that cycle for a while now… and it’s not a fruitful one. It feels dangerously irresponsible to be overrun by other people’s priorities rather than the conscious awareness of the call on my life.
I’ve prayed for a simpler schedule, energy to get it all done, and superhuman organizing abilities. But now, I’m trying something new. I’m sorting through the mess and doing the work of prioritization.
Doing the hard work in the midst of busyness and making decisions about what is most important in my life is challenging. Even in the privacy of my own living room, stopping the inertia of busyness and consciously choosing what matters most is a new muscle, and there are definite growing pains to strengthening it.
At times, it still makes me feel like I’m backstabbing a dear friend when someone else’s priority can no longer be mine. But there are also glimpses of hope, when I remember to respond with “I’ll pray about it and loop back with you” rather than an enthusiastic “Yes!” that was habit for so long.
Over time, I hope that discomfort will evolve to confidence as I learn how to navigate commitments with more grace and confidence, but for now, it’s conscious and hard work.
Last Sunday, Pastor Andy finished the Win Within series with a powerful message. What areas of your life might God want you to keep working, keep pursuing until you finish? If you didn’t hear it, listen to the message here.