God had been attempting to get my attention for several years now. Time, or lack of time, was the barrier in hearing from heaven. I was racing by, onto the next project, event, or chore.
“Busy is better,” was clearly my motto, and had been since high school. I wanted to be in clubs, chase academics, and build powerhouse college applications, which turned into the desire for a resume with superpowers…well, close enough.
Then, at 29, I delivered my daughter and life drastically changed. Through the motherhood transition I still maintained a habit of going, doing, and serving, just in different capacities. Same tune, different song. I just happened to be singing on several hours of sleep a night.
My mid thirties brought my head first fall into the need for rest. My autoimmune journey came to the forefront and I was perpetually exhausted without an outward physical malady to justify sitting. In fact, deep guilt and defeated thoughts wrapped around my mind every time I needed to be quiet or caught an afternoon nap. Pair this with our family’s relocation, which took all of my serving opportunities and well meaning activities away, and I was desperately searching.
God finally had my attention, but I wasn’t comprehending His desire for me. I had worked through scripture and read books, but the dots weren’t fully connecting.
Until the day I began reading Doing Busy Better: Enjoying God’said Gifts of Work and Rest by Glynnis Whitwer. “Me too!” began springing to my lips and echoed in my heart with each line read. She got it and I wasn’t desperately alone with my struggle.
In one line Glynnis brought years of missing God’s best to the forefront when she wrote:
Basically I had connected my being and my doing. These two things are opposite, but somehow I had connected them: I was what I did. And how I felt about myself was connected with how well I performed.
The tears formed from a deep well, overflowing with misconceptions about where my value stems from. My self-esteem based check list was stripped away, layer by layer, until the very raw place of accomplishment driven value was exposed. The list was a liar.
My value is found in God alone.
I had bought the lie, hissed by the enemy, which forced me to work harder to find worth. God had been grasping at my heart to whisper His beautiful truth, “I AM more than enough, just be youself.”
Creating my identity in work is no longer an exhausting mystery. I recognize the essential benefit of rest and who it honors. Now, the hard work begins: wrestling to maintain healthy balance, knowing the scales will tip when my self-regard is low.
Perhaps, you know this place? Low moments when projects and plans fall flat in the light of achievement driven expectations? You are not alone.
In this fragile moment, embrace your true worth found in a God who doesn’t require your exhaustion in exchange for value. Hold tightly to the Word of God, truth strong enough to shatter any debilitating lie. Grab hope that your over busy life can be tamed as you manage the need for approval.
Rest is not the enemy, and our Father in Heaven designed you for more than ragged, tattered fragments of a nonstop life.
Check out: Doing Busy Better: Enjoying God’s Gifts of Work and Rest, by Glynnis Whitwer (available July 4, 2017). You can sample the first chapter and learn more about this sweet author and her heart for helping women find work/rest balance.