I made a great list of to-do’s this morning, and I began with those things more important than anything on the list, and went from there to what was bothering me, and I think I’m onto something.
The list didn’t include coffee on the balcony with my son, or praying with my husband for a friend, or a long conversation with my daughter who told me that during her very excellent and productive Quiet Time she got “a word” for me.
Let me just stop and say something right here. If someone has “a word” for you that makes you feel like a worm, and a very disappointing and disapproved worm at that, don’t swallow it hook, line, and sinker (go to the lake and go fishing instead perhaps).
But when “a word” is the very thing for which you were searching and thirsting, when it lifts your heart and drives out fear and chaos in your thinking, now that’s a word. Rebekah read scriptures to me, which in a nutshell, said, “Be patient and be at peace. It will all get done, nothing missing, nothing broken.”
I took a deep breath and thanked her and said this, “And you know what? When you are in His peace, utilizing the power tool that is patience, those things do get done. But when you’re stressed and frantically trying to make it happen, to make the time, it’s as though you have slippery fingers. You’re always chasing and grasping, and like little slimy minnows, they keep slipping out of your hands.”
(It really does appear to be an excellent day to take a thermos of tea and some cookies and tuna sandwiches – there we go again – to the lake and go fishing. No, better yet, let’s go to the creek, where there aren’t many fish. I’m not interested in dealing with anything slippery.)
It’s just not that important that I catch fish. But it is important that I do the important. Time management advice, to a point, agrees with my advice: Do the important things first. But where prevailing “wisdom” says that would be write the book, work on the business, balance the checkbook, I say, “Begin with God and take His love to those He’s given you to love. Now, you’re ready for the day’s dance of rhythm and grace.”
And so, in spite of the wanting to get right to the excellent things on the list and feeling all pumped and prepared, there’s something bothering me that isn’t on the list. It’s the carpet in my bedroom. I decide to leave it for later (which is what I did yesterday) because after all vacuuming isn’t important, right? What’ a little dirt and lint?
But it’s bothering me. So, I go to get the vacuum, happily anticipating the satisfaction, and therefore the clarity I’ll have for further tasks, after the floor is clean.
But as soon as I put my hand on the handle I know, as my daughter Hannah said when she was a small child, “We must write about this!”
So, the vacuum is at the ready and the floor awaits. But you, Dear Reader, have this advice: Do what’s really important today: Give love as directed, and deal with what’s bothering you, whether or not it’s on “The List”.