My turn to share was coming, and I wasn’t ready. While the other women on our Google chat discussed their writing goals, my mind spun on repeat. With a new school year looking nothing like anything I’d known, this word “goals” had a whole new meaning. I was still processing it.
Ah yes, goals. What were those again? My goal yesterday was to make sure the kids sat in their seats for five minutes without making a trip to the bathroom or asking for more snacks. Today, it was to figure out tech issues.
Sometimes my goals vary by the hour. I’ve spent more time with my people in the past eight months than ever before, and although I love them, my mental capacity seems to wane a little more each minute. This afternoon, I turned my head to see our three-year-old daughter about to climb the built-in bookshelf. (Don’t gasp; she didn’t get far)
So, needless to say this Google chat was a welcome diversion where I could talk to other women like an actual adult. I listened to plans about our shared passion for writing and encouraging other women. It was bliss.
But my mind wasn’t on the future. It was on all the ways I’d failed over the past eight months. Goals that weren’t met. Timelines that were set and passed.
I sat there listening and secretly thought, “Is it okay if my goal is to survive until school returns to some semblance of normal?”
When it was my turn to talk, I wondered if I should skip over September altogether. As if reading my mind, one of my friends spoke up.
“You know, Abby, we’ll support you however you need us to. If you just need prayer for strength during a season, that’s ok too.”
I could have cried. Why did I think that in the middle of new schedule and endless distractions, my expectations should somehow remain the same? Everyone seemed to get it but me.
The weight of my own expectations crushed me.
I was buried under them. And I knew it had to stop.
Later that evening, I opened my nightstand and pulled out a treasure these same women sent me the week before my daughter was born: prayers for our sweet Elise. And prayers for me. I read over each one, soaking them in once more and paying particular attention to these words:
“May Abby find rest when rest is due and comfort solely in You.”
No, I wasn’t seeking comfort in Him. I was seeking comfort in items checked off my to-do list. My posture wasn’t one of rest, but striving and worrying. I was trying my best not to feel invisible. But you know what?
In the middle of all our striving to make ourselves visible to others, we are never invisible to God.
He sees us, loves us and holds us even when we don’t see Him.
Friends, having goals is awesome. I will continue to set them and attain them. But we don’t have to fight for God to notice us. If we are in Christ, he already sees us as his beloved.
Claim it. Believe it. Live like it.
When we do, we can stop fighting for his attention and pour out a love that’s already ours.
Will You Join Us?
Are you finding it difficult to care for yourself or create margin to hear from God during this crazy season? I hear you, sister. We are all worn out. How do we find time to replenish our mind, body and spirit when everyone needs us? This is why I am so excited to share a free conference with you that is geared toward helping women find rest and peace right in the middle of the chaos that surrounds our days. The 2020 Christian Women’s Self-Care Conference is has over 55 workshops from anointed speakers. My session is titled Creating Margin: The Critical Element of Self-Care. Other workshop topics include:
- Biblical Body Image
- Self-Care Strategies for the Storms of Life
- When the Holidays Aren’t So Happy
- Delight, Desires, and the Heart: How to Receive What God Has for You
- Breaking Free From Negative Family Patterns
- Getting Past Comparison and Caring for the One and Only You
And much, much more. I hope to see you there. You can register and learn more by clicking the link below.
If you need further encouragement that God is for you, even in the midst of the struggle, uncertainty, and unknown future, I encourage you to pick of a copy of my book, Shift: Changing Our Focus to See the Presence of God. Many people have sent me messages saying it is a timely book for this season, which encourages my heart so much. I pray that God continues to use it to touch lives.
You can purchase a copy of Shift by clicking the image below.