Following are two snippets from actual days in my life; you know, that mundane realm of the everyday where life actually gets lived out; nothing fancy, nothing profound but then again, perhaps it’s how we view things.
I’m convinced that the colloquial question ‘how’s life treating you?’ is rather inaccurate and things would be much better expressed and life better served by the following question, ‘how are you treating life?’
Today proved to be a rather encouraging day. It didn’t start that way. I began the day tempted to be a bit down but by God’s grace I just held in there and didn’t let myself succumb to the jadedness. When it ended I would describe it, in a spiritual sense as, one in which I was able to, to paraphrase the scripture, ‘against hope believe in hope’. [Romans 4:18]
Added to the jadedness was that fact that I didn’t feel like working or doing much of anything. Least of all, did I feel like working on my current shop project but there it was, a giant need-to-take-care of my own making, or lack thereof. I was also both a bit bugged as well as concerned about personal finances and feeling superannuated.…’ But I just hung in there and chose not to let the negative get a grip and God blessed it.
The first manifest pick-me-up was via an unexpected change in devotional material. I had just finished with a series I had been with for awhile and this very day I had begun with some new material which I’ve had on my Kindle but just have never gotten to it before. It certainly proved great reading and spot on for my spiritual needs.
Then was the blessing of unexpectedly selling an item I had listed on Craig’s List for forever and had about given up on: A little achievement to note perhaps, but positive and forward nonetheless: It never hurts to make a buck.
Finally, there was the shop project, which was weighing on my mind, as its outcome seemed uncertain. Sometimes, in the midst of doing such bigger projects, I get hit with this inner struggle, thinking that perhaps I’ve bitten off more than I can chew and that I’ve set myself up for failure, which only adds to the effect of pressure upon pressure. But as I applied myself; though I didn’t have the ‘feelings’, the leadings and ideas for the project began to take shape and I ended up making good progress, with solid ideas in the ‘mental can’, of how to take things, how I want to do things.
I, in fact, had made it over this ‘hump’ of ‘perhaps I can’t do’ into the mind-over-matter reality of ‘yes I can do’.
Today has just kind of flowed for me. I was in a bit of a quandary as to how to utilize my time and so after devotions and prayer I just set about my morning, doing those things that needed to get done; however lowly the task seemed, with plans to perhaps go out in the afternoon to visit with some of my network contacts. And so I washed vehicles; which were in dire need of it, processed more home-made Kombucha, processed and bagged meals for my dog, made phone calls, wrote and sent off a belated birthday card, had lunch, and even took awhile to rest, during which I fell asleep for a bit.
As I arose from my short rest, it dawned on me that I had needed such ‘down time’, that I needed to relax and have little to do, or at least things to do that didn’t amount to a lot of pressure. I had forgotten that I had worked through the weekend without a break, then went straight in to a strenuous day job the first of the week, on top of prepping for and leading a study group the following day. In addition, I realized that I didn’t need to go out after all. The best use of my time was doing just what I was doing; attending to little things, breaking stride, having a break, doing the more quiet things.
It amazes me how little things can be such big things; they tend to have a big impact, an effect greater than their relative size or importance. Little things have a habit of weighing on me mentally and spiritually, culminating in an almost tangible yet vague weight of presence. And by attending to the little things, I often find that they are just that.
As my day began to wind down, I felt ‘on-top-of-the- curve’; that instead of being under the weight of the wave of ‘undoneness’, (I know that’s not an actual word but it seems appropriate in this case), I was riding the wave, ahead of the curve, so to speak: Those weights that had almost tangibly pressed on me, were gone.