Alrighty, looks like it's time to deliver as promised some thoughts on "being still" or slowing down that I learned after I took a tumble down my basement stairs.
I don't know about you all, but our family often lives at a "break neck" pace that is ridiculous. With all of the things that we try to be involved in and all of the "errands" I can come up with to run in one week, it's truly overwhelming some days.
After my fall down the stairs, I spent 3 weeks in the bed. For the first time I can remember as an adult, I was forced to allow someone else to do everything for me. I couldn't take care of my home, my children, my husband. I couldn't drive, I could barely get myself dressed and medicated each day. It left me wondering what it must be like to truly be a person so handicapped that they are at the mercy of others to care for their every need. A humbling thought indeed. How many times have I complained about having to run errands with the kids in tow? Yes, it is easier when you have an extra set of hands or two, but it's not that bad - when you have all your faculties and the ability to do so.
The hardest thing for me was letting someone else tend to the things that needed to be done around the house. Fortunately my mother lives nextdoor and was able to jump in and handle things for us. She cooked dinner nightly, took care of my kids all day, did my laundry, you name it. For the first time I've hired a "house keeper" or whatever you want to call it. She comes in every other week to clean and do all of the hard stuff that I just can't do anymore. I hate to call Tammy my "housekeeper" because I feel like she is my help, my friend, my lifesaver! I've had trouble with my back off and on for years. Two car accidents were the beginnings, and the fall down the stairs I'm afraid finished me off. It truly was the worst pain I can ever remember having.
My amazing Sovereign Lord kept me from breaking anything (like my neck or back), and from hurting our precious little one, and for that I am deeply thankful. I believe He allowed all of this to teach me how important it is to live in the moment, and not be so busy that I'm "mindlessly" doing things without thinking about them. The day I fell down the steps, I had both hands full, I'd stayed home WAY later than I should have. I was leaving late, and in a rush to get somewhere. Why was I leaving late? Well, apparently, up until April the 1st, I was under the misguided impression that I was able to get more done in 30 minutes than I really could. So, I'd pushed myself to the last second, trying to get too many things done (probably none of them necessary) before I left home. I can't remember all I'd done that morning, but I'm sure it included checking my email a couple of times, and other things that really weren't all that important. All I really needed to do was get us all dressed and fed, and ready to go, but doing just what needs to be done has never been good enough for me. :O)
The "fall" has caused me to question everything I do each day - "Just how important is this?" "Just how bad does this need to get done?" "Does this need to be done at all?" "What does God want me to do with the next 15 minutes, 1 hour, 4 hours, week, year?" All of these questions have helped to greatly reduced my stress level for sure. I hope that you too will begin to question the things you do every day.
Here are the verses that have been most encouraging to me during these days of stillness and during my days of reflection. I am so thankful that God's Word dwells in my heart and that these verses come to mind when I need them.
Ps 4:4 "... commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still. "
Ps 46:10 "Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth."
Mt 6:34 "Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof."
Recently our pastor did a fantastic sermon on The Gospel and Parents. In his sermon he talks much about what is really important for parents to do for and with their children, and what isn't. He discusses the issues of our day that often hurt our children instead of helping them. I encourage you to listen to the sermon, it is fantastic, and his points could be life changing for you and your family. The sermon can be downloaded and listened to here, and the one on marriage and singleness are great too. Actually, they're all equally as good! Enjoy!
Blessings to each of you, slow down and enjoy your lives, your children, your health. Be thankful for a God who watches over your every need every moment of every day!
Lori (Being much more still these days!)