I was planning to post pictures of Baby Titus’ nursery this morning; however, I cannot find our camera chord…so, I thought I’d post some things the Lord has been teaching me. Hopefully the pictures will follow soon if I can find the chord! Just a warning…this blog post is a bit long today! 🙂

I had my 26 week OB appointment last week. Amidst the lovely glucose testing and the ever-dreaded scale, I found out my blood pressure was a bit high. Nothing terrible…just higher than it normally is. Being one to try to keep a close eye on my health, I was immediately worried (despite the fact that the doctor wasn’t worried, and my sister, a cardiac nurse, reassured me that my levels were still fine). I just HAD to know what was causing this higher blood pressure. Then it hit me:

I have been far too busy and somewhat stressed the last two to three weeks.

I can’t really pinpoint what has caused more stress than usual, but I’ve known it’s there. Funny how the Lord tends to meet you right where you’re at sometimes. Because I had to do my glucose testing, I had 45 minutes to sit in the waiting room and read a book. Honestly, it was bliss! Quiet, non-interrupted time to read doesn’t happen often. I’m reading through Ann Voskamp’s book, One Thousand Gifts, and the chapter I read that day was entitled, “A Sanctuary of Time.” What she wrote is exactly what I needed to hear! Probably precisely the reason my blood pressure was high…because I have NOT been heeding the advice she gave in this chapter. What follows are some of the excerpts from this chapter that the Lord used to speak to me about my constant busyness and stress:

On every level of life, from housework to heights of prayer, in all judgment and efforts to get things done, hurry and impatience are sure marks of the amateur.

Hurry makes us hurt. Hurry always empties a soul.

When asked what his greatest regret in life was, a pastor Ann knew answered the following: “Being in a hurry. Getting to the next thing without fully entering the thing in front of me. I cannot think of a single advantage I’ve ever gained from being in a hurry. But a thousand broken and missed things, tens of thousands, lie in the wake of all the rushing…Through all that haste I thought I was making up time. It turns out that I was throwing it away.”

I realized that this is me!! I am far too often in a hurry, and I gain nothing from that hurry. It only causes more stress, more problems, and more strife. I pleaded with the Lord to teach me exactly what Ann said in her book:

I don’t really want more time; I just want enough time. Time to breathe deep and time to see real and time to laugh long, time to give You glory and rest deep and sing joy and just enough time in a day not to feel hounded, pressed, driven, or wild to get it all done-yesterday.”

But, how exactly was I to do this? To fulfill all of my responsibilities without being in a hurry or wanting more time? Then Ann answered my question:

The real problem of life is never a lack of time. The real problem of life-in my life-is a lack of thanksgiving. Give thanks and get time. Give thanks…slow time down with all your attention-and your basket of non-enough-time multiplies into more-than-enough-time.

It was like a light bulb went off in this stubborn and hardened heart of mine…I have not been nearly thankful enough for ALL God has given me. Both big and small, God has overflowed my life with blessings, and I have far too often let the busyness of life cause me to overlook them. And so it has begun…I have taken Ann’s challenge to physically record each and every blessing in a notebook. A purposeful way to re-focus my attention from my to-do list to my Savior…to thank Him daily for “big things” like salvation from sin, for my children and husband, for my health. But, for the seemingly small things, as well…for the way that cup of coffee tastes in the morning as I read His Word, for the way the sun sparkles off my diamond ring, and for the way my children’s giggles cause my heart to swell. I say seemingly small because, in reality, these things are not small at all…they are God’s ways of speaking to me, encouraging me, and forcing me to slow down in order to notice and appreciate them.

So thankful for what the Lord is teaching me! I pray that this is just the beginning to a whole new way of living!

Psalm 39:6-“We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing.”

I don’t want my life to end in nothing…I want it to end by hearing my Savior say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” (Luke 19:17).