“Then I hear you say
You don’t have to do a thing
Simply be with me and
Let those things go
They can wait another minute
Wait this moment
Is too sweet
Please stay here with me
And love on Me a little longer
‘Cause I’m in love with you”
Just when I thought that God wasn’t speaking, or if He was, I was having some serious trouble hearing Him, I slowed down enough from the hustle of my new mom role to realize that it wasn’t a coincidence that these lyrics (from the song A Little Longer by Bethel Music) were speaking to my heart as the song played in the background at the exact moment I needed to hear it.
Just minutes before I tuned in and clued in, I was reflecting in my journal, reminding myself that I needed to learn to just BE and not DO all the time.
That may be something easier said than done for this task-oriented, goal-driven, accomplishment-seeking, (recovering) perfectionist.
Yes, definitely easier said than done.
I stopped writing for a moment and said, “Thank you, Lord,” knowing that He was trying to speak to me clearly- I DO too much. I focus too much on the tasks at hand. So much so, I am not even mentally present with whatever I am doing at the time. And because of that, I was finding myself void of joy.
How can this happen? I just gave birth to a “little bundle of JOY!” I’m not supposed to feel this way. Not now. Not after entering the most anticipated season of my life…
But here I was, only 3 weeks as a new, stay-at-home mom, with the most adorable baby boy lying beside me who I hadn’t held all day because I was too busy crossing things off of my “to-do” list: laundry, feeding, burping, diaper-changing, vacuuming, mopping, dishes, feeding, burping, diaper-changing, lunch, emails, phone-calls, feeding, burping, diaper-changing, dinner, feeding, burping, diaper-changing…
I didn’t feel accomplished.
I felt robotic.
I felt completely overwhelmed and frazzled, drained and exhausted.
My excellent productivity skills have always proven to be such an asset to my daily routine, but not at this moment. I couldn’t focus on the here and now, let alone enjoy it, because I was always looking to the next thing that had to be finished.
I can’t be the only person on the planet who has felt this way, especially in today’s fast-paced, extremely distracted culture that we live in that is so obsessed with efficient performance and productivity. And if we are ever finished with our tasks for the day, we still keep our brains on overload by flooding them with Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube…sometimes all at the same time with our phone, laptop, and iPad all within reach!
How can anyone remain fully in the present (and find joy in it) when there is always something pulling for our attention and we never seem to quiet down?
How can our minds find rest when we are constantly distracted?
Although constant mental stimulation and distraction may be normal in our society, it is not how God intended for us to live. If we continue our hyper activity, we will most likely miss His still, small voice speaking to us. And if we miss out on His voice, we miss out on His instruction that leads us to the abundant life He has promised us that is full of peace and joy and so much more!
He demands that we “be still and know He is God,” (Psalm 46:10a)- even in the midst of our overwhelming task list. It’s in the stillness, not overwhelming anxiousness from mental exhaustion, where we find a rest that only the Lord can bring, a “peace that passes all understanding” (Philippians 4:7).
I’m so thankful that I was able to hear the Holy Spirit tell me to be still and listen when that precious song was playing in my bedroom the other day. I was reminded of how much God just wants me to BE with Him. He didn’t need me to DO anything for Him because Jesus had done so much for me already so that I could be with Him- now and forever in eternity.
Why would I rush through this life frantically trying to cross off things off of my task list for the sake of productivity if I allow it all to steal my peace and joy?
I no longer choose to just go through the motions anymore just for the sake of accomplishment. I will make sure that I find quiet time in my day to spend with the Lord who restores my soul from the stresses of the daily demands of being at stay-at-home mom and wife. I will be present-minded and take in all of the blessings of this season of my life as I get the honor of raising my son in the admonition of the Lord and watching him grow up into a mighty man of God. I will enjoy every moment for what it is, not taking any of it for granted, knowing that I may not ever get it back.
Cheesy, but I refuse to listen to Nike- I will not JUST DO IT.
I will just BE it- still and full of peace and joy, inclining my ear to God’s voice as He guides me throughout my day- ever-present, task by task.
Amen. So BE it.
Emily Rose Massey is the author of Yielded in His Hands (eLectio Publishing, 2015), a true story of a life delivered from the mire and filthy pit and bondage of sexual sin and molded into a vessel for the Lord to flow through to reach others for His Kingdom. She and her husband are both active in many areas of leadership at their church, including worship ministry, drama ministry, prayer ministry, and youth ministry. In addition to teaching and preaching the Word of God, Emily also pours out her passion for the Lord through her songwriting. Her songs spring forth out of a forgiven heart full of thankfulness and devotion unto God. Believing she has been forgiven of much, she loves much, and desires to point others to Christ and His redemptive and transforming power. To connect with or learn more about Emily, visit www.emilyrosemassey.com.