Here we are, two months since I last wrote, after thinking I would be more consistent at this whole blogging idea. Funny how life can change so quickly. I’m learning that sometimes, I just need time to sit back and reset (shocker). Even if that means sitting down and writing down my thoughts instead of letting them anxiously whirl around in my head.
Personally, I am a verbal processor. Ask any of my best friends and they will tell you that if something is going on (especially a decision) I need a good, long conversation. I will simultaneously talk myself in and out of multiple scenarios (all of which I have obviously overthought) until someone brings me back down to earth. This blog has been a way for me to write out my thoughts to help me process and hopefully resonate with others.
If anyone has been around me long enough, or knows me well enough, they know that sitting still is not something I enjoy (or do often). Most of my friends call me a “busy bee”. I truly never stop moving! In addition, my mind never stops running. It’s quite the combination. For as long as I can remember, I have worked multiple jobs and invested countless hours into education over prioritizing relationships. I went through a phase where if an activity did not further my future, I believed it was a waste of time.
It’s been almost 9 months since I moved back in with my family and the post I wrote in March, Ready, Set, Stop., is still very relevant. I went back and read it over today and that was a good reminder to slow down. Don’t get me wrong, I have come a looong way, but investing in new relationships is scary and resting is still not easy. Being busy is a great (safe) excuse for staying unknown. The less people know about you, the less they can hurt you, right?
Today, I read a quote by Socrates that said,
Beware the barrenness of a busy life
I was moved by the thought. How accurate is that statement? When I stay so busy that I shut out people who want to spend time with me, I am choosing to be barren. Who wants to be barren?! “Barren” literally means you cannot produce and are unproductive or unfruitful like barren land. I identify myself with productivity and the performance that results from it…I can’t be barren!
Newsflash: Being busy doesn’t mean you are productive, and being in a relationship doesn’t mean you are fulfilled.
I was talking with some new friends the other day and we were discussing how money, material things, and status does not satisfy the human desire for fulfillment. When you replace the importance of investing in people with producing a profit, your priorities are mislead. People who idolize their jobs, work productivity, or success are empty and barren. Alternatively, investing in people for the sake of gaining something from them is equally wrong.
When someone’s identity comes from their job title, paycheck or material possessions, that’s a very lonely, toxic life to lead. They have everything and nothing at the same time. People become a means to an end. Objects become idols. I don’t want to fall into that downward spiral. I’ve watched it happen first hand. I’ve been hurt by it. I’ve been replaced by it. Believe me, I sat next to someone who claimed to care about me, yet I felt completely alone because his mind was not present; it was always at work.
I have come to realize that I have no power to fill a need in myself, or another person, that only God can satisfy. I also realize that no one else can fill my own personal needs (the ones I refuse to admit even having) but the Lover of my soul who asks for my full surrender. Our contentment should be found in nothing and no one but Christ alone. Once our identity is firmly secured in who Christ is, then we can clearly see who we are as sons and daughters, and receive the good things He has prepared for us.
Thankfully, I have found solid community at a church (call it a hive if you will) and I am on my way to building a healthier lifestyle than I had previously. I’m learning to jump in, speak up, be spontaneous, ask questions, initiate conversation, and get involved. Instead of using my tendency to stay overly busy with work, I have been investing in groups that have been such a blessing to me. For the first time, I feel like I am flourishing spiritually, mentally, and physically.
One of the girls last night prayed the verse below over us as a group to close the evening and I thought it was so fitting. I will leave you with this as I have been meditating on it myself. Bring your heavy hearts, bring your weary hands, bring your tired minds, bring your brokenness, bring your busyness and find rest for your searching souls:
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.Matthew 11:28-30