Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Busy-ness. What Does it Mean to You?

As I was doing a little shopping the other day (which I am doing WAAAAY too much of here in the States!!!), I ran across the calendar display. As usual at this time of year, they are out there in abundance. The one that caught my eye was called the "Mom Organizer" or some such title. It was full of little stickers like "dance class," "soccer practice," "test," etc. All kinds of cute things to keep track of everything you and your kids might be involved in.

And then I realized I didn't need any of them.

In my quest to simplify our lives, and in part due to our move to Doha, we haven't gotten involved in any extra-curricular type activities. We've been very, VERY low-key since moving. To the point of almost being bored to tears. But that's another story.

My initial reaction after realizing I had no need for this calendar was a sense of worthlessness. As if my self-worth is wrapped up in how many projects and activities demand my time. This is actually not the first time I've thought about it.

From time to time, I've gone through periods where I've stepped back from one activity or another and realized I had a sense of loss. Loss of identity, in a way. If I wasn't (insert activity name here), who was I? Why would anyone want to be my friend? Was I doing enough to please God?

Obviously, it's an issue I haven't yet conquered, given my reaction to the calendar. But there are signs of it in my life as well. I've begun working with the youth group at our church in Doha. I'm also teaching Sunday school on a monthly basis. I'll be joining the women's ministry leadership team in the new year. I'm considering leading a Bible study for young girls in our home. And I'm planning on enrolling both kids in at least one extracurricular activity each upon our return to Doha.

And since all this is in the works, I've been feeling better about life. I've tried to take time to pray about each decision and talk with my husband about them. I'm trying to make sure that I don't just add activity to fill my sense of loneliness and boredom.

I do want to strive to maintain a simple life, but does that mean staying at home all the time? There's more to it than that. It's about finding a balance between activity for the sake of busy-ness and meaningful work for the sake of being a blessing to my family, my church and God.

How do you find that balance?


Debbie said...

Lori- I think you're focusing on the right things. It's so easy to get caught up in doing many good things but then find you have no time for the best; what God is calling you to do. Our identity is not in all that we do ...but to Whom we belong!

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!


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