Alone Looking up Black sky Bright stars Pulsing green Howling wind Creaking trees Snapping branch throaty growl Skulking footsteps Raw fear Frozen still Bared fangs Pain Tranquility Warmth Light All ebbs Nothing more
Sometimes, enough is simply enough, and last week, I learned the importance of those words.
A camp-out wedding approached. Being the person who offers before thinking, I’d volunteered to make a chili, a cheesecake, and a pistachio salad. Sounds simple. Shouldn’t take long at all. Except, I voiced my good intentions before I considered the wedding was on a Saturday. And that’s the day I’ve cleaned my house for over sixty years, and I’m so routine orientated that if I can’t do it Saturday, I must do it Friday, or the rest of my week goes topsy-turvy.
The folly of my quick, unthought out response hit me like a March wind. But I’m tough, and there is always a way. I’d just get up earlier, clean the house, then make the promised food. After that, I’d do the revisions on the next chapter of my WIP, which needed doing because if I missed a writing day, the clouds would fall.
By ten a.m. Friday, my house, minus the kitchen, was clean, and only one load of laundry remained. I mentally patted my back as I removed all the meat the chili required from the fridge. Ground beef, steak, bacon, Italian sausage. All huge portions, because a hundred guests needed feeding. All needed precooking.
Because of my small kitchen, and my apprehension of cooking two meats at once without burning one, I did them one by one. Time ticked by. So did my strength. But, by midafternoon, all ingredients were simmering happily in the portable oven. An hour later, the salad and cheesecake were setting in the fridge.
I had completed what seemed impossible the day before, but my strength deserted me on golden wings, leaving me feeling like a thin, holey dishrag that needed discarding. I slumped profusely- perspiring, heart-pounding, gasping for breath, into my recliner, wondering at what age my marbles deserted me.
Then, my spirit fluttered, and I recognized that flutter. God was teaching me a lesson. One He needed to sit me down long enough to get my attention. I’d made a wrong and thoughtless decision. Being so eager to please, I’d failed to count the costs. But God hadn’t. I heard His gentle correction loud and clear, reminding me enough was enough, and I’d overstepped my limitations once again, abusing the body He gave me to care for.
His Word encourages us to come apart and rest. It even informs us God rested. So if God rested, how much more should we do the same? Exhausting myself is not honoring Him. Nor is allowing goals to control my life or considering lollygagging a waste of time.
It took an exhausting day for me to learn to listen to God and my body. It emphasized the need for me to choose my commitments wisely, and it’s okay. God doesn’t want me running around trying to achieve the impossible. He needs me rested and ready to do the tasks He appoints me to accomplish.
Smooth from years of washing
Speckled gold, amber, pink
Along the banks