The Middle of the List

2 04 2014

Complicated, overwhelming, multi-tasking – do those words describe your day? Your life? We run from appointment to must-do to have-to-have, leaving our souls weary and our hearts shattered. We struggle to get one more item on our to-do lists crossed off before we fall into bed exhausted, setting our alarms so we can get up and do it all again tomorrow. Waking in the morning, we jump back into the complicated balancing act that makes us feel like failures before we even start.

I used to believe that I would have time to live my life when I got to the end of my to-do list. In childhood, I would do my homework before I could go outside and play. In adulthood, I found myself using the same system. Work first, and when you are done, then there will be time to enjoy the moment, soak in beauty, be creative, and savor the sweetness of today.

One day, I realized that I was missing my life because there is never an end to my to-do list. Every day brought something new. For every item I crossed off, two more appeared. Discouraged, I prayed about my fear that I was missing the life I was working so hard to build. Early one morning, there was a quiet answer – learn to live in the middle of the list.

My Jesus Resolution today is to live in the middle of the list. The same kinds of things that are on your list are on mine. All those things that are necessary to living our lives, taking care of our families, and doing our jobs. Living in the middle of the list means making room for the small joys, the glimpses of beauty, the moments of love, and the power of friendship God sprinkles into the midst of laundry, deadlines, and going to the bank. A busy life is not the same as a rich life. A busy life always has its eye on the end of the list. A rich life delights in what it finds in the middle.


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