3 Reasons You Might Be Too Busy

I hear it over and over and over. I even say it myself:  “We’re just soooo busy!”
I see our busy-ness addressed at church and in books, on blogs and Christian magazines.
I even see it addressed in non-Christian media.

why-so-busy

In fact, I see the problem stated so very often that I forget to think about the cause.

It seems like many times, teachers and pastors are showing us how to treat the symptoms while ignoring the problem

Why is everyone so busy?

Here are a few reasons to think about.

1. Everyone else is busy

We’re keeping up with the Jones’s.  We might purpose to slow down when school starts, but then we talk to our friends and their kids will be in karate, on swim team, taking piano and playing in the band.  Plus they’ll be participating in such-and-such ministry as a family and each spouse will be in the church choir…all of a sudden we wonder what we’ll be doing in those boring afternoons when the kids finish their homework.

2. The culture around us.

We live in a culture of speed.

We don’t want to wait for things.  We’re always moving.  I do work on my laptop while waiting for Facebook to load on my phone.  We want lightening fast internet and answers to text messages within 20 minutes.  If an email isn’t responded to by day’s end we wonder if we’ve done something to offend the other party.

3. We’re running.

Sometimes busy-ness can be an indication that things aren’t right.

  • Are you hurting?  Are there issues under the surface that you just don’t want to think about?
  • In the quiet hours, does your heart ache? Do you feel anger, sadness, or hopeless?
  • Do you avoid thinking about finances, your marriage, or your interactions with one of your children?

We can “try” new things all day long.  We can cut down on the kid’s activities and loosen up our schedule.  We can learn to say “no” to choices we’ve determined aren’t beneficial to our family, and we can even move to the country and start homesteading.

All , or even one, of these decisions could be the right ones to help you and your family slow down, unless the reason for your busy-ness is number three.

Friend, if you are filling your schedule with good things because it’s too hard to look at the painful things, please rethink your decision.

It’s in the quiet moments that God begins healing.

In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength. Isaiah 30:15

Find rest, O my soul, in God alone. Psalm 62:5

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. Mark 1:35

This fall as the school year begins for so many and activities pick back up, instead of focusing so much on how busy I am, I will be thinking on why I’m busy.

I’ll be focusing on finding time with God.  I’ll try to carve time in my schedule purposefully – so I can fill it with healing and seeking His voice.  Join me?

There can be so many reasons for our busy-ness.  Can you share any others I didn’t list?

Little Dreams – a poem for mothers

Marys-TreasuresYou.

Heavy eyes.

Arms wrapped

we rock.

You.

Nuzzled rolly neck

of graham cracker smells

and stickiness.

You.

Tiny fingers lightly pinch

your brows

eyelashes

lips.

You.

Far away smile

halfway to dreams.

Baby-Boy-Smiles

I.

Drink it in with

mother’s heart.

Drop lips upon your

sun-kissed hair.

Remember other tiny heads.

More kisses for those

bigger now.

I.

Soak your sweetness in.

Wistful how

it flies.

But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. Luke 2:19

Blessings, Christy

I Am My Beloved’s

When I was young I watched someone do something I did not approve of.  I told my mother:  “I’ll never do that.”

My mom wisely responded:  “Don’t judge until you’ve been there.”

I scoffed.  I was young and full of knowledge.  In fact, I probably knew it all.

Life has taught me otherwise.  I am almost constantly reminded of that conversation and my mother’s wise words.

IMG_0630My extensive knowledge was directly challenged the moment I married and had children.

I managed to keep it together after #1.  Then #2.  When I got to my third boy I wasn’t so sure.  I wavered a bit.  Beds went unmade.  Bathrooms were not always clean.

Then I pulled myself back together.

Fourth baby.  This was a bit rougher.  I remember trying to get everyone out the door for some errands after my mom left and my husband went back to work.  I was changing the baby’s diaper, getting shoes on the toddler, and directing my “big” boys and I thought:  this is a lot of people.

I became pregnant with my fifth baby and everything went to pot.  My husband worked nights, which meant he left the house at around 4, right around the time I could no longer function.  I served a lot of cereal and mac’n’cheese over those few months.

What have I learned from having these children of mine?

  • I’m good at blaming my emotions on other people.
  • My plans are nice, but they’re not what’s going to happen most of the time.
  • Rules and schedules and routines make me feel secure, they don’t make me lean on Jesus.
  • Children bring me out of my innate selfishness and teach me oh-so-much about the love of God.

Most days I struggle with anger and frustration.  Most days I struggle with finding my identity in being a Good Mom and Getting the Laundry Folded.  I struggle with letting my children be their own people – not extensions of me.  I fight the contrast of what I thought mothering entailed with what I am now as a mother.

Things have turned out a lot differently than I planned.  My mother’s words come back to me:  don’t judge until you’ve been there.

Yes, mom, you’re so right.

I never could have guessed what having 5 children would mean.  I never could have guessed that the downturn in the economy would mean the end of a business and a job for my husband.  That years of figuring out what was next would engulf us.  I couldn’t have guessed that our marriage would suffer huge setbacks, or what those setbacks would be.

Without this marriage and these five sweet children I would have no idea:

  • how to eat while the volume in a room of seven people actually exceeds the levels at most rock concerts
  • that night-time hours rocking babies can be the sweetest hours ever known (but not always)
  • how easy it is to look at the ways I’ve failed and forget the things I’ve done right
  • what surrender means – my plans versus God’s plans
  • how to address my frustrations and anger and give them over to God
  • that my identity is in God, not my plans or my actions or my choices – not my husband or my children or anything they do.
  • and most importantly

I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine. Song of Solomon 6:3

I would have no idea what it means to lean on God as my beloved, and the acceptance I find in being His.

 

Me and Kids Mother's DayBlessings,

Christy Halsell

www.christyhalsell.com

This post is a part of our “Who We Are” Series. For all posts visit,

“Who We Are: The Stories Behind TBM Writers”

Who We Are at The Better Mom

Graduation Day – Focusing on What’s to Come

You thought it would never come.  Graduation day.

graduation giftYesterday you were changing diapers and today you’re preparing for graduation festivities.  I think we all have moments of surprise when our children get to lifetime milestones.

Where did the time go?  I was gonna…

It can be tempting to wallow in our memories and our sadness.  It’s easy to think about what wish we’d done, or that our child is gone forever.

As Christians, we know better.  We know that God can redeem anything we feel we didn’t do quite right.  We know that God is in charge of our child, as He ever was. We know that He’s got our children in His hands. So on this day of change and new beginnings, let’s bless our children with our own excitement for their future.

In honor of the graduation season, we’d like to provide you with wall art you can have printed.  These images can be printed and framed to serve as gifts for the graduates in your lives, or as centerpieces for graduation festivities.

1. Click on the images below for a printable 5×7 pdf file (see bottom of post for jpegs – some print shops might require these).

2.  Print up yourself (cardstock might work best) or have printed locally (Office Max, Costco, Walmart, etc.)

3.  Add a frame!

4.  Excellent grad gift!

Numbers-Grad-Wall-Art-Printable

Numbers-Grad-Wall-Art-BoyYou can check out my website for more free graduation printables, or my Etsy store for custom graduation posters.

jpeg of Numbers Printable {girl}

jpeg of Numbers Printable {guy}

“graduation caps” photo credit (Dr. Seuss quote added)

Blessings,

Christy

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