It's been over a year since I've had a week off. It's been several years since I actually left our home and went somewhere for anything more than a day trip to the zoo. Right now, I am working two regular part time jobs and three that are more sporadic. I enjoy all of them, but some days, I'm feel a teensy bit overwhelmed.
I'm not complaining - I'm just explaining my situation. A few years ago, I read The Christian's Secret of a Happy Life by Hannah Whitall Smith. The premise of the book is to completely surrender to Christ - no matter your circumstances - and that is the source of happiness and peace.
At the time, I thought I got what she was saying - at least intellectually. Of course, I knew that we are supposed to surrender ourselves to God, to let ourselves be molded on the potter's wheel.
But I really didn't "get" it.
Until recently, I've been fighting my circumstances, to the point of exhaustion, really. For example, I worked super hard, so I'd have the couple weeks off at Christmas time when my kids were out of school. It was a disaster and a huge source of stress as I was emailing with an editor at 11:30 p.m. trying to figure out pictures.
I wasn't really "off" at all, and I resented it. I was unhappy and completely stressed out the week before Christmas. I felt cheated that everyone else seemed to be able to enjoy the holidays, but I was stuck working at Sylvan and putting out fires at my newspaper job. It was far more stressful trying to be off of work than if I had just worked like normal.
I spent a lot of time whining to God about the fact that I just wanted a couple weeks off - was that too much to ask???
Over the past few weeks, as I have focused on not complaining and being thankful, a funny thing has happened. It was a result I wasn't expecting. Instead of being weary and tired, I feel energetic and hopeful.
The reason for this? I've stopped fighting my circumstances, and find myself seeing things to be thankful for all around me. Instead, of expending my energy pushing against my daily life, I'm resting in Christ. Instead of starting each week with an attitude of "I have way too much to do" or "why can't I have a vacation?" I just look at the week ahead of me and do it. I take one week, sometimes one day, at a time, and have begun to trust that God will provide exactly what I need for each day.
Strangely, I don't feel nearly as overwhelmed. I've begun to use my time much more wisely. I seem to get more accomplished each day. I'm not saying I wouldn't enjoy a vacation to Hawaii if someone would like to spring for the trip. :) What I am saying is that I was wasting a tremendous amount of energy fighting the inevitable.
"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke [is] easy, and my burden is light." Matthew 11:28-30
God truly does make my burden light when I choose to rest in Him.
~ Blessings, Bronte