This week has been physically, emotionally, and mentally exhausting. Do you ever feel that way too? Like you can't fit it all into your schedule, that the unexpected circumstances that arise are deflating your will power, that the more you feel you are doing good for others you in turn feel depleted and tired? Yeah. (long sigh) Me too.
I sometimes feel like I have too many irons in the fire. I have a direct sales business, an Etsy shop, I take orders, sew clothes, enjoy home improvement, love to cook, have laundry on a rotating schedule, hired a house keeper to help clean (praise!), shuffle babies back and forth to visitations, kids in AWANAS, choir practice, church, Bible study, and at some point I need to find time to shower. Didn't that just exhaust you reading it?
There's even more when you talk about the kids school and exercise and shopping. Geez!!! No wonder I threw my tired self down on the couch last weekend and checked out.
Custom jewelry orders are coming in. That's just God showing out. He promised me the marketplace was where I would find my provision for my family. He is true to His promises. I'm truly blessed!
I love working with my hands and I keep them busy for sure! Only tonight as I laid in bed and all was quite and dark I felt a real stirring deep inside me. I was being called to my prayer closet. It gets real deep in there. I sat down, read my devotional, 2 chapters in my Fervent book, filled out 3 prayer cards, then closed my eyes. I took a deep breath that traveled to my soul and back. I exhaled my prayers spilled out. Every hurting friend who had asked for prayer, for all the tired mommas, for my children, my husband, for myself, for everything I asked Him for wisdom. For myself, I cried that I was overwhelmed and not feeling sufficient and asked for guidance. Do I slow down? How? Do I rest? When? Am I really over loaded? No! I'm just not careful. I'm not focused. You can't be in the world and have it all together. I can't worry about elections or arguments on Facebook. I can't keep scrolling through videos and newsfeeds. I can't keep reading status updates from every person on my list who has a thought or checks in. I can't worry about those things.
The work is never easy. However no matter what I do or how hard I work 1 Corinthians 3:7 says....
"...but God who gives the increase."
1 Corinthians 3:8 says....
"One will receive his own reward according to his own labor."
I labored. I shiplapped my laundry room, painted, and tiled that sucker this week. I worked hard. My hands hurt and my feet hurt but the effort was worth it. Even if it is just a laundry room.
I shared all this to say...
I am tired...
So I prayed with a weary body and a weary mind tonight. Lord, am I doing too much. Am I? Sometimes it feels amazing to accomplish so much and sometimes it is plain exhausting. The Lord gave us all gifts and talents. I give Him glory for anything I accomplish. As I prayed over my Bible for words of wisdom I opened right to this well known passage.
The Virtuous Woman
I read through Proverbs 31 and took a deep breath. A sigh of relief this time. Every single verse made me feel better about how I have so much that I am doing for my family. How can anyone of us live up to this "Virtuous Woman" role described here?
Many of us already do.
I encourage you to read through it. When you're feeling overwhelmed read this passage. It is encouraging. It's not about living up to this expectation. It's about slowing down and being careful and thoughtful towards whatever role you have.
It's about being deliberate and thinking through what needs to be done. Picture it, a woman quietly rising early and starting her day, providing, caring for, offering herself at all times to help her family and others. It's almost like a dance through life. One that is fierce and gentle.
I picture a ballerina and how graceful she is. How she floats through the air and her points are perfect. What I didn't see was all the hard work and bloody feet it took to create the illusion of grace and weightlessness. When she bows out, the audience applauds. Behind the curtain she is proud and exhausted; energized and worn.
I can do this. You can do this.
Praise God we were built to do this!
I am sufficient.