Time and Priorities
On Tuesday, Ann Voskamp posted . It’s lovely and totally worth reading. I feel like its concept is so simple and absolutely relevant to the story I’ve been walking through for the past few years.
I came to the Rule of St. Benedict because I was mesmerized by Kathleen Norris’ simple statement in her book, . She said this, “The Benedictines have always believed there is enough time in each day for work and study and rest and play.” I simply wanted to know if that was possible, if there could ever be enough TIME in each day. The story of my book Found is the story of my life since setting out to understand how “enough time” could ever be possible, especially when it comes to prayer.
And, now it’s time for True Confessions:
Tuesday morning I was up at 5:30. I worked from 5:30 to 6:30 on a deadline for my book. At 6:30 I got dressed (not showering for the third day in a row…because, who has time?), then I fed my kids breakfast, tamed a two-year-old’s tantrum, changed a diaper, packed two lunches, one computer + charger, begged children to put their shoes on, and jumped into the car at 7:40 instead of 7:30, which meant we were ten minutes late to Kindergarten. Then I dropped my littlest one off with a friend and came back home to write. I worked from 9:15 to 12:45, then boiled some eggs and scarfed them down in time to pick up the youngest and then head back to the elementary school to pick up the oldest.
When we got home, I put Brooksie down for his nap and read to August, fed him a snack, and helped him with his homework, which took For. Ev. Er. to finish. In fact, he got too frustrated to finish it. It was hard. I’ve been learning to let our afternoons be consistent and slow, because my oldest longs for routine and space to take his time. So when Brooksie woke up, I didn’t push anything. We did puzzles together until I announced it was TV time and worked on dinner. Chris was out last night so I made an easy dinner, let the boys take a bath, and did dishes until bedtime. After the boys’ bedtime routine, I worked until Chris came home at 10. We drank a cup of tea together and then I worked again in my bed until 11:30.
I give you this schedule not to complain. This is an extra busy season of my life and it doesn’t always look this way. But I just want to say that even though I wrote a book about how there’s enough time in each day for prayer and for the things that matter to us, it doesn’t always seem true, right? We are the only ones who can decide to make enough time in each day for “work and study and rest and play.” And somedays it happens and somedays it doesn’t.
So I’m asking you for this: How we can help each other make space? On good days, prayer is my 5:30 am priority and on challenging days, I find myself at 10 am realizing I haven’t even said a word to Jesus yet. I really believe that God has grace for my prayerlessness. I do. And for yours too.
I just long to figure out a way to make the things I love and long for–prayer, exercise, reading–priorities in my life.
What about you? What are you longing to make time for in your life? Are you prioritizing self-care in your daily life? Maybe if we talk it out, we can make our own space for it, right?
Photo Credit: on Flickr writing an essay outline examples