Recently, a friend of mine and I were talking over a delicious Shrimp Po Boy and Fried Green Tomatoes. As we enjoyed our lunch, we found ourselves commenting about how some days we just don’t feel very “up”. After we shared all of the vitamins, supplements, lotions and potions we were taking to feel good, it hit me. I said ” You know, I bet you will feel much better when you pick up that paint brush again”
It made me think of endless days of energy as a kid when I pretty much had no responsibility and had hours to color. I loved to color! Why don’t I color anymore? ( The Notebook anyone?) Remember when there was less to do? Now we have bills to pay, errands to run, meetings, dinners, obligations, climb the ladder of success, pray for and check on everyone, expectations….yada yada yada. I’m sure you can add to the list.
The problem is we don’t take the time, and I mean, it’s there and will require TAKING SOME THINGS OFF OF THE CALENDAR. It’s called “down time.” You may have heard of it or you may be thinking “but my kids need me to run them everywhere lady!” I get that, why not grab an adult coloring book, your favorite book, bible and journal and get lost in someone else’s story while you wait?
I remember Joyce Meyer telling a story where she was complaining about being overwhelmed and God reminded her that she was the one in charge of her calendar!
In this season of empty nest for me, I’ve decided if it includes fellowship, God’s call, smiling, getting lost in the moment, growing spiritually, adds enjoyment and pleases God, then I’m in. If it overwhelms, vexes my spirit, makes me unhappy or feel pressured to be there or has no fruit….then it goes! Nothing more gets added to my calendar of ministry, family time, sacrifices and responsibilities unless these apply. I’ve also learned to schedule in rest. Say this with me “Sorry, I can’t today, I’m binge watching and eating popcorn” Sorry, I’m creating a masterpiece” “Sorry, I’m dancing in my living room”, or “Sorry, I’m spending extra time with God today”.
The truth is we are no good to anyone stressed out, overwhelmed, unhappy, and sick.
Paul knew the value of wholeness when he said “We’re the best of friends, and I pray for good fortune in everything you do, and for your good health and that your everyday affairs prosper as well as your soul” 3 John 1:2 The Message
Take a moment to comment with those things you used to do and loved! What will it take for you to enjoy those things again? I challenge you to go to your calendar and take one thing off and add in something you have been meaning to do!
Time is too precious and believe it or not, God does want us to enjoy life!
Jackie Tinkler is the Co-Founder and Ministry Development Director of Something More and lives in Birmingham, Alabama. She has been ministering to women for 20 years as a Women’s Ministry Director, Counselor and Producer. She is co-writing a Women’s Small Group Study “Something Beautiful” and when not leading women to freedom can be found worshipping at Church of the Highlands, decorating her friends homes, enjoying time with her family and chocolate lab Nelson or sitting in the balcony at the Alabama Theatre.