Are You Too Busy?

Are You Too Busy?  www.terilynneunderwood.com

As I have been writing and preparing to speak this weekend, I’ve been re-reading several of my favorite books on rest and priorities.  I think my all-time favorite book on the topic of rest and Sabbath is The Rest of God: Restoring Your Soul by Restoring Sabbath by Mark Buchanan.  I’ve underlined and highlighted and dog-eared a large portion of the book.

One of my favorite chapters is the one on busyness.  Well, maybe favorite isn’t the best word.  It’s a great chapter but it hurts me to read.  I find myself so convicted.  As hard as I try to keep plenty of margin and white space in my life, far too often I’m in that place where busyness has become the norm.

As I was reading, this paragraph caused me to stop and think:

The Chinese join two characters to form a single pictograph for busyness:  heart and killing.  That is stunningly incisive.  The heart is the place the busy life exacts its steepest toll. (45)

Powerful word picture, huh?

I’ve been really busy the past couple of weeks.  Really. Busy.  We had D Now in our community for our students and we hosted eight 7th and 8th grade girls at our house over the weekend.  My daughter turned 13.  Scott had a speaking event.  The girl had a show choir performance.  I wrote and led a prayer walk for our children’s ministry.  We’ve sung at the nursing home.  I’m speaking at a senior adult event on Thursday.   And I’m finishing up my two talks for the women’s conference this weekend.

Oh and we had new furniture delivered and for some reason everyone in my family still wants clean laundry to wear and yummy meals to eat.

Busy.  Too busy.

In fact, in the midst of all this busy I’ve had a couple of meltdowns ranging from uncontrollable crying to (I’m embarrassed to admit this but …) stomping out of the room mad about things that really and truly don’t matter.

Anyone else ever been there?

Yeah, busy has definitely been taking a toll on my heart.  Reading Buchanan’s book was exactly what I needed to refocus and regain that perspective about what really matters.    Maybe you can relate? Busy is a choice … but so is rest.

Are you too busy?

 

Other great books on rest and Sabbath:

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6 Replies to “Are You Too Busy?”

  1. Well since I have had 2 stomp out of the room mad meltdowns and one crying meltdown all in the past 8 hours over school stuff I believe that you are okay. You are very busy these days and you are allowed a little meltdown occasionally. Good luck this weekend!

    1. Teri Lynne Underwood says: Reply

      Thanks, Laura!

  2. Stacey Thacker says: Reply

    I fell apart on the way to field trip yesterday when I got lost about 5 feet from where I needed to be. Girls in the van with me. Tears and frustration. Not pretty.

    When I came to my husband for “comfort” he said “You have not margin in your life…”

    Which made me mad of course.
    Until I realized he was right and speaking truth.

    So wish I could hear the whole talk friend. I think I need to sit on the front row.

    xo,
    Stacey

    1. Teri Lynne Underwood says: Reply

      Um, I’m recording it. So, perhaps it will find it’s way to your sweet ears. I love you, my friend. Enormously.

      xo

  3. I try to keep reminding myself that every ‘no’ is a ‘yes’ to something else…rest, quiet time with The Lord, soul stillness. Our family is slowly cutting back on after school activities and excessive volunteering. I feel like I need to enter a quieter stage of life and really try to observe the Sabbath as a day of rest and family rather than catching up on laundry, mopping floors and cleaning closets. Guess I am gaining wisdom in my later years!

    1. Teri Lynne Underwood says: Reply

      We are slowly implementing Sabbath practices into our family’s routine as well. I try to stop all activity by 6 pm on Saturday make sure everything we need for lunch on Sunday is ready. It’s slowly making an impact. I’ve been making several other changes in my life as well. I’ll probably begin sharing some of these on my blog soon.

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