Thursday, January 17, 2008

spinning plates

Do you ever have trouble stopping the swirl of thoughts, ideas and emotions in your head? I do. Especially when I have lots to do, and decisions to make. I feel as though something is hanging over my head.

Right now there are lots of changes going on for us, including moving our Sunday Celebration service to a different location (and learning what that all will look like and mean for us), Seth asking (pleading, in fact) to go to school next year, and not the least of, being my hubby returning to his old job full time (which means a minimum of 40 hours, usually a bit over 40 in addition to what amounts to about 5 hours drive time to and from work weekly). Yeah, that would be in addition to pastoring. And yet, I believe it's where God is taking us right now. That I do have peace about.

But all of these changes has made me take a look at my life, my schedule, and my priorities. Somehow I feel like there are several things that I want to do, can do, am supposed to do...and yet I seem to have trouble keeping all of them going - and going well - all at the same time. People have said to me "I don't know how you do it all...", and to be perfectly honest, I don't either, and most of the time, I think, in reality, I'm NOT doing it all - or at least not doing it well. It seems like I can focus on being homemaker, and I can clean and organize, and make good meals...but school doesn't get done. Or I focus totally on school with all the kids every day, and by the end of the week the house looks like a bomb went off, and I haven't done any of the church stuff that I want to get taken care of. Or I can focus on the church responsibilities and ideas I have, but school gets my half-attention and we eat...well, whatever I can come up with in 10 minutes or left - like hot dogs, pancakes and spaghetti - or pizza. It frustrates me to no-end that I can't seem to get a rhythm to life where I can keep all the plates spinning at the same time!

So right now I think I've got to enter a season of serious prayer about what God is calling me to do. Yes, there are a million things I could do, but what is He saying that He wants me to do. Otherwise, I'll burn out myself, my family and have nothing to offer anyone. And I'm pretty sure that's NOT His plan.

So, if you think of it, I could use a few prayers for clarity, grace and...well, some good organizational skills would be helpful too! :)


Aunt Linda said...

Jessi, honey---have you ever considered that perhaps you're expecting way too much of yourself? Seth is begging to go to school next year? Let him go, secure in the knowledge that God has His hand on Seth, no matter where he is. Sometimes what we think is a bad situation (public school, in this instance) could certainly be used for good on God's account! Don't look at it like you're shuffling him off, either. Especially if it's what he wants. Who is going to think less of you if you don't home school him--or any of your kids? From all I've read, home schooling isn't the answer for every child.

Your full-time involvement in everything you do--wife, mother, homemaker, church stuff, school teacher--leaves very little time for YOU, and to be the best you can for all your jobs, you have to have SOME time for YOU. Even Jesus went off by himself to rest a while. Sometimes it's about being organized, but sometimes it's about having put a heavier burden on ourselves than we can really carry.

I am praying for wisdom for you!

Love you!

Kristine said...

I am so with you on everything you said... I can empathize completely. I don't have any divine wisdom, but for me I have learned it's just a season of life I am in for now. Whatever I am doing at the moment, that I will give my all to. If dinner isn't a gourmet meal... you know what, my kids will enjoy it more anyway. My dishes always sit because I am doing schoolwork... but when it gets extreme, either Chad or I get it done. I am just trying to cling to God's grace for whatever activity I am doing at that moment, and the rest can wait. (Unless Ezekiel is sticking the end of Isaiah's headphones in the outlet... then I try to jump in before disaster arises.)

All that to say I think you have to probably be at peace with the fact that God has given you so many talents that can be used in so many ways... He's going to give you the grace to do it. If anything feels especially like it's not for now, lay it down... I will be praying with you to see those things clearly!

Jessi said...

Thanks for the prayers AL... yeah, I know everything you said is true...I'm pretty much planning on sending Seth to school at this point. I always said we'd decide year by year, kid by kid, and so I guess I knew it would probably end up that at least some would go to school, but it makes me feel like it will be such a huge change. In some ways it will be a relief to me; in others, it will change some family dynamics and things like the fact that we could take a family vacation at the end of September, and that Todd & I go away to a conference every year in March. Nothing that major, but feels major at the moment. But I'm sure God will work out the details.

And Kristine...I totally this point I have to just live fully in the moment I'm in! It seems like our situations are running totally parallel in so many ways!