Friday, September 26, 2008

Led by the Spirit

I feel as if the Lord is trying to teach me to become completely let by the Spirit. Asking God for guidance on the big things is something that I've always done. Asking for guidance on every decision, well that's another story.

With all of the small decisions to be made I am usually quick to answer and slow to remember to ask God for wisdom. The older my children become, the more I am finding a need for total dependency on God and the Holy Spirit to direct ALL of my paths.

Life has gotten so hard over the past few weeks. We've been working through character issues, and being overwhelmed with our school load (co-op can be burdensome). There has also been the transition to our new church with all of the new activities and possible areas to serve in. And lastly, finding time to write. It seems that my plate runeth over right now! What's a mother to do?

I even had a crazy dream the other night. In my dream, my whole family was attending college. I had spent many hours preparing each child for their specific classes. We had done tons of homework and I had even helped each child pick out the right clothes. Then I had to walk them to their classes on campus. At 8:25 am I dropped off the last child and realized that I had neglected to do any of my own homework and I was still in my sweat clothes and a whole campus away from my 8:30 class!! I woke up in a full sweat!

I decided it was just another anxiety dream until my Friend, Chatty Kelly, suggested that the Lord could be trying to tell me that I am not setting aside any time for me and what He wants to do through me. Hmmm??? This makes sense. How then, do I come up with more time for me?

This is where I need the Holy Spirit to help me. I can't make time, but God can! He can guide me daily to show me when I need to take time for my things. I will tell you that after doing it wrong for 41 years, this is a hard habit to break. I am certainly a work in progress - I would love to have your prayers right now.

The hardest thing for me to figure out is this: In putting others first, how do you justify taking time for you? Caring for my family and friends is a full-time job! One that I usually enjoy, knowing that God is calling me to write, this is the part I'm struggling with. Oh Holy Spirit, please lead me today and every day!!!

12 comments:

Sue J. said...

Love your neighbor AS YOURSELF. CK will sometimes call me on not taking good care of myself first. If I'm not, that means anyone else I try to reach out to is not going to receive my best.

You have a very challenging situation with all that you are trying to do. Sometimes, it's not a matter of carving out more time; it's a matter of letting something go. You have already said here that you are not feeling called to service opportunities at your church right now. Probably a God-intended direction, if you are not making time for you.

Pray that any feelings of guilt or other unhelpful feelings or thoughts would be taken away, so you can see where God needs you to focus.

The Patterson 5 said...

Sonya,
I will pray for you, your plate, and your cup so that instead of running over all over the table; it will be a satisfying manageable full. Through the Holy Spirits guidance may you discern what can be trimmed so that you can take care of you and then be all that God needs you to be for others.

Chatty Kelly said...

The best analogy on this I've heard is: On an airplane, when the cabin pressure drops and the masks come down, the stewardess says - "Put your own mask on first, and THEN help any children with you." If you put the children's masks on them first, you may not survive to put your own on. But once you are taken care of, then you have the energy (Breath) to care for others.

You need to take time to breathe. Then you will be able to care for everyone else too.

And I love Sue J's comment - AS YOURSELF. You don't love others in place of or instead of yourself...AS yourself.

Bonita said...

Sonya, you and I seem to be on the same wavelength so often and this is no exception.

For years I've had a recurring dream "theme" that I'm late for class, didn't do my homework, can't find my classroom, or something along the lines of being unprepared for school. In the dreams I always feel so disorganized, shocked at my own lack of abiilty to remember or get things done, and always, always, always feel like I'm forever trying to play catch up.

I have a little bit different take on it. This usually happens to me at one of two times. Either I'm spending so much time on the trivialities of life that I'm not doing what I know I'm called to do (I'm distracted) or I'm trying to do everything in my own strength and feeling completely overwhelmed with life.

For me, these dreams are an idicator that it's time to regroup and think through the things I'm doing. What is important? What isn't? Does anything need to be cut from the agenda? Did I start out doing something God wanted me to do and then take the reigns from Him and attempt to do it in my own strength? Am I feeling pressure to "accomplish" things myself that can only be accomplished by God working in me and through me? Am I really hearing God or am I only hearing what "I think" God is saying? The dreams are a reminder that what I really need is a good long time at Jesus' feet tuning my ear so I'll be able to hear His voice in the midst of life.

One question in your post really caught my eye: What's a mother to do? Maybe this will help. Years ago I was having one of those overwhelmed with motherhood and life sort of days. My kids decided to make a list for me of all the things that mothers were supposed to do. I agonized expecting a giant list, but they returned with a list that contained only two things: Kiss the kids and help the kids. I think that pretty much sums it up. If we can get those two things accomplished we're doing good.

As for the writing, remember that there is a time and season for everything. God originated the writing in your life and He will fulfill the plan He has for you- in His time, in His way. You don't have to write bestsellers today and you especially don't need to try to do that when you have a house full of little priorities running around needing Mama. Don't put pressure on yourself that God isn't putting there.

I've said enough, but I think you understand where I'm coming from. You talked of yielding to His spirit in everything, but remember that with that comes peace and a "light" burden and "easy" yoke.

I'm glad you posted this because I needed to review all of these things myself.

Truth4thejourney said...

Dear Bonita,
You are so right, I am in need of a time of regrouping at the feet of Jesus! I am feeling very drained and it's because I've allowed the busyness of life to overwhelm me and distract me from staying in the "spirit".

Thank you for these encouraging words. :)

Edie said...

Praying for you Sonya. I tend to get so caught up in activity that I can hardly catch my breath sometimes. Recently I realized that I was in a spiritual battle and asked God to bind the enemy, bring the unnecessary activity to a halt and free my time to focus on an be with Him. The answer was immediate. God bless you.

Pinkshoelady said...

Hi Sonya,
I suffer from this too. So here are 24 little words I remind myself.
1 Corinthians 6:19
"Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God and you are not yourt own."

In context Paul is speaking about immorality. But this verse reminds me a giver who has a hard time taking care of myself...it is so much more fun to give than recieve, that I am also a temple of God. If I let this temple down physically, emotionally and especially spiritually then the temple won't be as usuable, or as strong, or as clean as it needs to be.

So if putting yourself is hard for you like it is me...think of yourself as God's temple. We are not our own we belong to God.

You are always so insightful and real. I love reading your blogs>

Pamela

sailorcross said...

Oh, I know exactly what you're talking about! It's difficult to let go of some things so that God can do His work in our lives.

I'm praying in that direction right now, too. God doesn't want you to be anxious or overwhelmed or worried. He just wants you to sit at His feet, and then He will direct you through the Holy Spirit where you are to go, what you are to do.

Beth

Tammy R said...

I will be praying for you. I sometime wonder if I'm spending to much time doing to many things for God but not serving Him.

He wants us to serve with a heart full of peace not frustation. To be overwhelmed with blessings not buyness.

I once heard someone say to be busy is:
Bondage
Under
Satan's
York

I think we all have been in that place of busyness!

Debra said...

Sonya,
I pray you are working through this by now. I know He will guide you, and that you are listening for His voice.
Love, Debra

Starr said...

Boy Oh Boy, are you gonna love the book you won over at my blog!! It must have been a God thing for you to win it. After reading this post, I am sure of that!!

I have been dealing with the same issue myself. In fact, I am currently working on a series of posts on the subject of living in simplicity. It is just way too easy for any mom, especially a homeschool mom, to neglect herself along the way. That is just NOT God's plan for us. Overwhelming activity is not supposed to be our daily agenda.
I am praying for you.
Love you,
Starr

Kathy S. said...

What a great meal of truth reading these comments...Women having all experienced what not to do and what to do.

Summed up in, Be still and know that I am God...

God bless you as you seek refreshment!