As a child my mother used to tell me that my eyes were bigger than my stomach. Most of the time she was right. I’m proud to report that is no longer the problem, as I have quite an impressive streak of “happy plates” going for me. Unfortunately, I do still struggle with biting off a bit more than I can chew at times. I guess some things you just never outgrow.
Rather than ordering a hamburger that is twice the size of my face, my struggles today are different. I often commit to more than I can actually do. Or to say it more accurately, more than I can actually do well. As Paul says, the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak (Romans 7:18)…or sometimes the desire is there but the hours left in the day are simply too few.
For me, I’m realizing the value of finding a healthy rhythm and practicing moderation – yes, the moderation of our commitment level. It feels like there is an incredibly strong pull from our society to be involved everywhere. For me, it leads me to saying “yes” so much that it seems as though I’m doing a whole lot, but feel I’m never doing any of it very well. To put it another way, I feel like a jack-of-all-trades, but a master of none. Like the guy spinning all the plates in the air, the pace cannot continue much more, lest it all comes crashing down.
So if I may be transparent for a moment, this is an area of my life where I have to be on guard. It really takes a lot of constant re-evaluation. My wife and I seem to have a similar conversation often. Where are we being stretched thin? Where can we get better with our time and commitments? And you know, sometimes life is just busy. Some things are worth the stress. Some relationships and ventures are worth a season of sacrifice. But for the things that aren’t… May we have the courage to politely decline.
This may only be for me, and if so that's just fine. Through a few tough lessons lately, the Lord has pointed out some of my glaring weaknesses. I can get so tired, so cranky, and frustrated like nobody's business – prone to disappoint – not just others but myself as well. However He has also sweetly reminded me of His eternal endurance. He never tires or grows weary, for He is everlasting (Isaiah 41:28). He is my Rock and my Portion. And guess what? The bible says He chose to make Himself known to me in this very fragile state in which I exist. In my weakness, in the midst of failure, while I was an enemy of the cross, Christ died for me (Romans 5:6-10). Not because I was good enough, not because I was showing some potential. He saved me in spite of me. He did so because He is good and that's just what He does (Psalm 119:68). Daily He brings me back to the amazing truth that I’m His and He is happy about it! And since God continues to pour out grace upon grace, I’m thinking maybe we should occasionally cut ourselves some slack too…
May we not use up all our yesses before we get home, but rather find a rhythm in this life that’s healthy for our families and honoring to You. Lord help us grant ourselves grace and give You the glory.