My uber-busy April really began in March and went through the first weekend of May, but it was April itself that I thought would do me in. Too many commitments all culminating in a month already busy with Easter and two out of town speaking engagements and a trip with hubby. But as of yesterday, those commitments have slowed to much more manageable.
As I thought back over the month, I realized that if at all possible I really don’t want to get in that situation again. And so I’ve pondered, looking for lessons learned to help me as I move forward once more, knowing that, of course, I can’t completely control the schedule life throws at me, but I can take some precautions. So here’s what April 2014 taught me:
- I need to consider longer term commitments in light of the fact that I will need to decline–or at least very, very seriously consider–other opportunities that come along during that period, therefore I need to be VERY sure that the long term commitment is one I am truly committed to.
- I need to consider work done on travel days as a bonus instead of a planned event, for travel days often do not turn out as I imagine and I am usually much more tired that I anticipate when I finally reach my destination–be a it away or home.
- I need to pad the amount of time I estimate a project will requires, for almost without fail I will take longer than I anticipate, for whatever reason.
- Resting and reading are as important as work.
- It’s okay to say “no,” or “I can’t get to that right now.” This hasn’t been hard for me until it started to involve my writing, but I think the Lord hammered it home over these past four weeks.
- Even in the midst of crazy-busy, my soul can rest in God.
Sometimes the Lord allows circumstances to put me in a vise that teaches me something or requires me to depend more fully on Him, but sometimes the chaos of my life is a vise of my own making.
This April has been a vise of my own making. I realize that. And I really, really hope I’ve learned from my mistakes in imagining I could pack work in around relationships until I had no time to think or breathe. But I have also run to my God as my rock of refuge and He has been faithful to bring me through. He has given me rest in Him, even as He allowed me to slog through the circumstances I created. And He bestowed blessing, too. For in this month of chaos, this month of projects that didn’t include my own writing, He stirred in me a renewed passion for the work He has called me to do. I can’t help but be grateful for that.