Taking time for me is something that keeps changing over the years. In my earlier years, taking time for me was not even on my radar.
While growing up, I was really busy trying to find someone who would stay by my side and be my friend. I ran hither and yon to find them. I did not know that Jesus wanted to be that for me.
As a young mom, I was of course immersed in the goings on of my small children, and trying to build a household. It was popular thought at the time that as a woman, you could “Have it all.” I was living to find ways to get it all done. I did not know that Jesus had already provided a way for that to happen.
My children grew up and began their own families, and I was frantic trying to find ways to fill the time. The way I did that was to fill my mind (and my house) with projects to keep my hands busy. That turned into many unfinished projects and guilt for not finishing. I finished some, and got rid of the rest. I did not know that it was Jesus who had already made it possible for me to fill up that creative space in my heart.
All the frantic, caused my physical body to break down. That began a time when all I did was take care of myself, i.e. nap, nap and more nap. I did not realize that Jesus had just the right prescription for what ailed me.
I was a believer. I knew God existed, but maybe for someone else, but not me since I was so lazy. Desperation led me to question His love for me and if He really meant all that He said in His word. The thought then crossed my mind to actually sit, in a chair, by the window, and just think of Him. Just think about what His word says. Decide if I really believed it all or not.
I spent much of that time dozing off, feeling guilty for dozing off, waking up, trying again, and dozing off some more. Time passed, and I began to call it “Resting in the Lord”. Jesus began to make me realize that if I did not take care of myself, then there would be nothing left for anyone else.
Over the weeks and months that followed, I found myself actually being more awake, more alert, and fuller of God’s words. They began to seep into my spirit and give me strength. Strength enough that I actually joined an exercise class that began to strengthen my body. That was five or so years ago, and that class is still a part of my life. God had revealed to me that if I wanted to do His plan for me, I would need to be as strong in my body as I was in my spirit.
2014 was a year of great introspection for me. I knew by Holy Spirit’s prompting, that I would need to spend a mass amount of time with Him, and myself, excavating some hurtful things in the past. Normally, spending that much time just with myself would have seemed selfish, but I found myself sure that if I did, then I could stop being tripped up by the things in my past. There was no guilt for this time, and it paid huge dividends. There were two resources provide for this time, and Bonnie Gray’s book “Finding Spiritual Whitespace” was the first. It opened the door for the second. 2014 brought my dark spaces out into His glorious light.
Now in 2015, He is allowing me to share my experience with others.
All this to say, there will always be some thought, someone, some thing that will try to keep you from taking care of yourself, spending time on yourself, being with yourself. Make it a priority. Make it an appointment for your calendar. It is important for your mind, spirit and body.
In the end, it will be important for the people that are in your sphere of influence. Only God knows how big your sphere will become if you only take the first step!