With school having officially begun for me, I’ve become quite the busy bee. Rushing from school, to band, to soccer, to church events, and soon-to-be guitar lessons. In between all of that, I try to find time for homework (and food– that’s important, right?) I have to have my game face (AKA: put on a smile and try not to look so tired) on at all times most days. And boy, let me tell you, does that get tiring. Especially when you don’t feel like putting a non-existent smile on because you are beyond exhausted and emotionally drained to the max.
So how do you solve this problem? That’s an excellent question that I am still trying to figure out. But I’m beginning to put the pieces together.
Step one: Take a step back. It took me awhile to look at my crazy list of “things to do” from a different perspective. I realized that I am so incredibly blessed to have so many amazing things to do. And although they may sometimes feel like a burden, God has given me so many things to be thankful for. I get to have, not only an education in academics, I receive one in sports and music as well. There are so many kids and teens in the world, no, the country, no, the state, no, my community, that don’t get an education at all. So I’m trying to learn how to not look at my busy schedule as something that weighs me down, and instead view it as something God has given me to lift others up… leading me to my next point.
Step two: God has me where he needs me. This one may have taken a while to realize for me. And I’m still working on it. For a while, I was super bummed out that I’m not yet in high school because a lot of my close friends at church are. One of those friends gave me a wake up call and reminded me that if God wanted me in high school, I’d be there. So I’ve been applying that to other things in my schedule. Soccer, for example, is a perfect environment for me to live on mission in my community and share the gospel. I hang out with these girls practically every weekday and every weekend, so I’d be wasting my time if I wasn’t taking advantage of that. I have the opportunity to display, in my actions and words, the gospel. And that’s a lot easier said than done. But the Holy Spirit has been very clearly working in my heart, and my mindset at non-church environments is slowly changing from just being there and feeling like I have to do something “Christian-like”, to wanting to engage in conversation with people and wanting my friends to know Jesus.
Step three: Stick with me here. I know, there are a lot of words on this page, but I have faith in your reading abilities. :) Anyways, step three is to continue to feed myself with God’s word. That’s another area where my heart is very clearly making a 180 turn. Two months ago, reading my Bible was something I felt obligated to do. I knew I needed it, but it wasn’t exactly that exciting to read, so I generally only read a chapter a night and proceeded to do my nightly prayer time. But one night, I was reading Romans, and after I read a chapter, I turned the page and read another because it was just so good. Then another. Then another. Then another. This continued until I suddenly turned the page and realized that I had finished the entire book of Romans. Afterward, I felt so renewed and relaxed and so full, if that makes sense. The next night, I was looking forward to reading my Bible. And I still am! But on those days when I feel like my life is too busy and I “just need some sleep”, doing devotions gets pushed down on my list of things to do. And even though I know it’ll affect how my mood is and the way I act, I still let my thoughts get the best of me a lot of the times. Recently, someone reminded me that reading my Bible and praying are something that I need to find time to do. It’s not one of those casual things that I’ll get around to if I have time. They are a priority.
So there you have it. My three steps to helping my busy-ness completely capable. (I mean, of course, not including get of ridding of things on my schedule, which would be absurd!) These are all a work in progress for me, but I’m so glad for the people in my life who are there to encourage me and for a God who loves me so incredibly much.