Tending to Your Heart

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We value efficiency over artistic expression and often exist in an impersonal culture separated from family and friends.
— Sally Clarkson, Own Your Life

I am guilty of being a producer. I am production-driven and believe that if what I'm doing doesn't serve a good purpose, it's not worth pursuing. However, most of the time it's focused on work such as cleaning the house, homeschooling, meal-making and even the books I read. Whatever I do must yield immediate results. I am driven by what is seen on the outside and struggle to cultivate my own heart to see beauty, creativity, and the art of slowing down. 

I believe I am carrying a false notion that production equals value. I find myself constantly telling my children to hurry and feeling guilty if I am sitting idle for any reason. Even when I'm sick! When I cannot keep up with the housework, I feel like a failure. After a while of this constant madness, I am drained and become easily agitated. I don't take the time, consistently, to stop and allow myself to refresh. 

Sally so gently encourages me in Chapter 10, Tending Your Heart and Investing In Your Soul. 

You see, many times moms feel it is selfish to take any time for themselves and even though I, myself, am an advocate of taking that time, I don't take it often enough. I always see how much there is to do and how few hours in the day there are and struggle to justify filling up my own heart and soul.

And although efficiency isn't always the goal, when I am not filled, I do not work as efficiently and I am not as kind to those around me. Sally says,

We value efficiency over artistic expression and often exist in an impersonal culture separated from family and friends.

Not only is she referring to technology here, but also the belief that everything we do MUST be useful and productive.

God calls us to rest and created beauty to fill our souls. When we are constantly emptying ourselves and never refilling, we are not the best of ourselves that we can be. 

When we are constantly emptying our hearts, minds, and souls, it is essential that we take responsibility to keep filling them up. What we feed our inner beings will determine what we can give to those in our spheres of influence.
— Sally Clarkson

I have to ask myself, are cleaning and discipline and work all I want to teach my children? Are they important? Yes! But we need to learn to slow down and see the beauty that God has placed in our lives, every single day. Life is hard enough -- He offers us daily graces. Will we receive them?

For His Glory,
Christin Slade

Christin

Christin is wife of 16 years to her high school sweetheart and mother to seven children. She looks for beauty in the simple and appreciates a good cup of coffee. She is learning to live everyday with joy, find gratitude in the mundane, and speak words of grace. You can find Christin writing through her days on her blog, christinslade.com.