Every day is full. Sometimes I have an agenda and it quickly changes based on the immediate need. I spend most of my days with the title of mama bear/homefront project manager and in the mix is pastor’s wife, counselor and small business owner. For a long time, ‘busy’ was a badge that I proudly wore. It justified me as a woman. I felt like if I kept myself busy then I was doing it all right. In fact, the busier the better. In our culture, it is easy to look at another woman’s busy and think differently of them; like it is a competition. The deeper I got into my busy day, the prouder I felt. The truth is that I was missing out on a huge community while trying to wade the deep waters alone.
The past few years, I have learned so much about the importance of transparency and reaching out. One particular winter day when my middle child was an infant, I remember being so lonely and didn’t even know where to start. I remembered a conversation where a fellow pastor’s wife once told me to call her if I ever needed anything. While I nervously dialed her number, a blubbering mess, I will never forget the love that was waiting for me on the other side of the phone. You see, this girl had already walked in my lonely shoes just a few years prior and was willing to share her life with me. What she told me that day rings in my ears constantly…."people are only willing to go as deep as you. Put yourself out there. You need a friend." You see, busy had become my identity and I had lost everything else.
I know what you are thinking. Everyone is busy. It is unavoidable. I agree. We all have houses to clean, meals to fix, deadlines to meet, and families to care for. We all know how to multitask really well, but if that is the depth of it, you are missing out. Often times, appearing busy is a defense mechanism to keep people away from you. Embrace your busy, but do it with the joy of the Lord and support from other women who are just as busy. Here are a few things that I do in my personal life to knock out the "to do’s," but still find joy in the process.
At church, I look people in the eyes and learn their names. I tell them I am going to pray for them and then actually do. I also make a concentrated effort to let people know that I am not perfect. Often times, the pastor’s wife carries that persona and it’s just not true. I am a real woman, with real feelings and I share them to help other women feel connected.
With our business, I try to get to know the customers. It is way more than making money to me. We make gorgeous farmhouse style tables (shameless plug: TEHN Designs) =) and I have a passion for making someone’s house a home. Providing pieces of furniture that will cultivate conversation and create lasting memories. To me, the dining table brings people together. Yes, it is pretty, but it’s so much more than that.
I try to get everything done, but I always prioritize people over chores. The chores will be there the next day. I realize that my kids are only small for such a short time and I have lots of time to have a super clean and organized house. With my hubby and kiddos, I tell them I love them a trillion times a day. I make their favorite meals and I pray for them constantly. They truly are my world. The way I treat them is a direct reflection of how much time I have spent with Jesus. When I have had my time with him, I find myself pouring out way more grace than my natural self can do. When I neglect my quiet time, I find myself short with them.
What am I trying to say? It’s ok to be busy, we all are, but don’t judge another person’s level of busy. Love them right where they are. They might just be your next best relationship. Don’t close your eyes to the hurting all in the name of busy. Drop what you are doing and be yourself. Let your days be full--full of love, creativity, and passion and for goodness sake….don’t be busy alone!
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