Wednesday, September 29, 2010

An Unhurried Life

Recently I recounted here on my blog a very busy weekend. We moved from one commitment to the next, many wonderful things all stacked back to back. I gained some momentum early in the Summer when we planned a huge road trip to Mississippi. Somehow the push of that trip started a domino ripple across Summer and into Fall. It has been one "brick" bringing down the next since that trip.

The noise of it all is pushing out the voice I used to hear so easily. His still soft voice that I seem only to hear clearly when everything around me has stopped, the voice that comes after everyone else in the household (including Eric) is in bed, actually asleep. Sometimes I can hear the voice when I've turned on the exhaust fan in the bathroom, locked the door, and am soaking in a bath so hot that the mirror steams up. Sometimes I can hear the voice when I'm driving home alone from a night time grocery shopping trip.

Yesterday I was at MOPS, one of those wonderful things that was sandwiched between two other good things. Another mom was giving a brief devotional about the value of living an unhurried life. I listened. I swallowed her words. They tasted so sweet, better than ice cold Pepsi on a hot Haitian beach. I knew I needed to find my way back to that unhurried place because a part of me has been slowly dying in my rigorous attempt to say yes to all the right things.

But my calendar is full. Some things I cannot graciously put aside. So instead I contemplated getting up after Eric fell asleep and stealing a few hours for myself. I can no longer count on two hands the number of times I've stayed up into the morning hours, snatching a few hours of sleep just before Eric gets up for work and the kids rise for the day. But I know it concerns my husband, so I chose sleep.

Morning came. Two kids were up, one was dressed and I was arguing with the other about wearing clean, rather than dirty pants to school, when the phone rang. It was my brother. I don't remember what he called about. But in the ten minutes I was on the phone I started to itch from my waist down to just below my knees. When I got off the phone I discovered hives covered my body. Uncertain of the cause, I had to call my friend, who has newborn twins, to tell her that I couldn't help her out by picking up her two year old for a play date like I had promised. Two hours later, after a dose of allergy medication, the hives receded and the guilt over letting down a friend returned (which has lasted much longer than the hives).

Some days I miss the unhurried minutes that Gracie gave me when she nursed. She never focused solely on the task, which sometimes frustrated me. She enjoyed the being with me. She'd giggle, stop, look at me, and wait until I smiled, giggle again and then resume eating. How do I learn to feed on God's word like that?

How do you live an unhurried life?

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