January. A brand new year! Time to come up with some new year’s resolutions. Time to make a list of things we want to accomplish in the coming year. It’s the perfect time to try new things. Go to places we’ve never been. Right?
While there’s nothing wrong with any of these, there’s still something that nags at my soul when my calendar starts to fill up. We can fill our lives up with a lot of good things.
Good things for ourselves.
Good things for our kids.
Good things for our family.
But I’ve often found myself doing so many good things that I don’t do anything well. I come up short. I spread myself so thin that I’m no good to anyone.
Maybe I’m qualified to do five things really well, yet when I try to cram them all into a short window of time, those five things crumble, making me feel as if I’m barely treading water.
But shouldn’t we say yes to every good thing that comes our way?
Meeting a friend for lunch? That’s good!
Exercising to stay in shape? That’s good!
Shopping with your mom? That’s good!
Making cookies for your child’s class at school? That’s good!
Leading a small Bible study for church? That’s good!
Working part-time to earn a little extra money? That’s good!
Signing your child up for their favorite sports? That’s good!
Volunteering at your local community center? That’s good!
Yes. Each and every one of these are good things. Nobody would argue that they aren’t.
But if you say yes to every single good thing that comes your way, at some point it will leave you feeling frustrated. Overwhelmed. Frazzled. Stressed to the max.
When we run from one good thing to the next at a break-neck speed, we often miss out on the rest God longs for us to embrace.
Resting in his presence. Resting in his peace. Resting in his purpose.
Instead of saying yes to everything, we could stop and pray before we answer. Asking God for wisdom and discernment.
Maybe this good thing would be better if I embraced it later, instead of now.
Maybe I should say no to this good thing so that someone else will have the opportunity to say yes.
Maybe this good thing is really my plan instead of God’s.
Sometimes I’m so busy saying yes to the good things that I don’t make time to pray and ask God what is best.
As this new year begins, here’s a challenge.
Instead of asking God to bless a long list of our hopeful accomplishments, let’s stop and humbly approach him.
God, what is your plan for me? I lay down the things I think are good. Help me rest in your presence, so I can know what’s best. Your best.
Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Blessings to you, dear friends!