Sitting in the morning dark at 5:30 am yesterday before my 2-hour-to-work commute, I had this profound insight… life is really hard. Now that seems pretty obvious on the surface I admit but read on.
I live alone most days of the week because where I work is a long way from where I call home. When my work hours are done, the rest of the day is mine. I can go put in my laps at the pool. I can eat what I want when I want. I can go to bed early or stay up late watching a movie. I have a lot of freedom.
But when I’m at home-home, it’s different… there’s just so much more going on. Not only the tasks of home and family, but there are parent-teacher conferences and swim meets, decisions to discuss and people to meet, schedules to accommodate and errands to run. Not to mention the paperwork! Bills to pay, forms to sign, documents to wade through and insurance claims to babysit… oh my!
I started to imagine… or re-imagine what it was like when my kids were little and needed me more. Imagine having to take care of an elderly parent or someone who has cancer. Imagine having to work two jobs to support a family. Imagine having to work through heartache after the death of someone dear. Imagine having to figure out where the next meal is going to come from.
I don’t know when the world got so complex that it made everyday life seem huge, perhaps it was just a gradual evolution that seemed fairly benign at the time. I am an advocate for growth and change so I know I might have welcomed such evolution without realizing its consequences. The question on my heart now is:
How do we fit the whole God-thing into this complicated life? When is there time to pray? How do we carve out even a few minutes to answer 20 Questions a Day or to write down 5 things that we’re grateful for each night?
I don’t know. I wish I had an easy answer.
Religious leaders and self-help gurus will say that it’s all a matter of priorities… that we will make time for what’s truly important to us. I believe there’s some truth in that but in the long-run… we still have to take care of the children. That’s a proverbial way of saying that most of those other tasks still need attention too.
Life is hard no matter how you stack it up. I am asking myself a new question these days… Am I giving my best effort? If I can answer yes more often than not, I assume that God is taking care of the rest.