Doing TOO Much
As Christians, if we have the heart of Christ, we want to serve. We want to help people, give to people. In the home, we want to please our husband. We want to give our children the best, participate in things that will help them to grow in character and in the knowledge of Christ. We desire to help out friends, fellow believers and even those we come into contact with online.
We can end up making our lives so busy that we simply cannot cope. Can you do too much?
Recently, in my enthusiasm to help someone with a worthy project, I agreed to do something. To my shame, I TOTALLY forgot to do it until something reminded me when it was too late. I felt terrible and immediately apologized to the person involved, who was incredibly gracious. I realised that I was trying to do too much with an already busy life.
How can we decide if we ARE doing too much?
For starters, if we end up being so tired that we cannot function, then we may be doing too much. As much as any hard work should bring a healthy tiredness, doing TOO much can make us too exhausted to even accomplish the basic tasks we should be doing in life. If that’s the case, it may be worthwhile to through what we are doing, and seeing if anything can go.
If we are getting stressed out about getting things done, then we may be doing too much. Being anxious about fulfilling commitments, stressing about our capabilities, or time needed to do something, may indicate that it’s too much to have on our plate in the first place.
Getting to the stage when we forget to even do things at ALL is a strong indicator that we were trying to do too much anyway, like I did! If it slipped your mind, it’s probably because your mind was already filled with other things to remember! Invariably, it’s the primary things we remember, and the things less crucial to our basic life that are forgotten.
If you are neglecting the basic needs of your husband and family, you are DEFINITELY doing too much!
More often than not, we take on extra responsibilities for very honourable reasons. As I mentioned, it’s often to have a willing spirit or to help someone else. However, the Lord gave us our family, first and foremost, humanly speaking, and they should take priority when we decide what needs to be done in life.
How do we avoid these things happening in the first place?
I know I have fallen prey to this aspect – pray about everything before you say yes. There have been times where I have not gone off and prayerfully considered the activity in question before making the commitment. In my enthusiasm for interesting, fun, captivating and uplifting activities, I have failed to wisely ask for the Lord’s guidance before saying “yes”. It seems like a no-brainer, but sometimes we think that something is so “good” or “right” that we don’t really need to pray about it. Often, if you take a step back you will realise it’s not as right and good as you thought after having considered it fully.
Then you have to think about what you already have on your plate and assess whether this will fit in with it. Will it squeeze your time, energy and mind so hard that you won’t be able to do ANY of the things well? Will it prevent you from serving your own family and doing what your husband would like you to be doing? Will it stop you from putting your spiritual duties before anything else?
Also, if you need a balanced view on things, it may be wise to ask your husband, or a close friend who knows what commitments you have already. Some people do ask their husband’s permission to do anything, but many husbands will happily give their wife the freedom to make choices in their role as wife and mother because they trust her to do so. It’s those wives, with husbands who have given them the liberty to make choices freely, that may need to wisely go back to them and ask what they think, respecting their perspective and advice, as opposed to asking their “permission”. Often, we may think it would be a good fit to do something, but a wise counsellor will be able to look at the situation objectively, and suggest reasons why you should or shouldn’t throw yourself into it.
You may need to also assess whether you are PHYSICALLY up to the task. If you already suffer from health problems, taking on extra responsibilities could tax you further. Once again, if it stops you from being able to perform basic tasks, it may be too much. I know some people suffer from chronic pain and they would do NOTHING if it was based on giving them more pain. I’m talking more of exceptional circumstances, such as during pregnancy or recovering from child-birth.
The Lord delights in those who delight in Him. If something we have chosen to do will rob us of our peace and joy because we are unable to do it or feel incapable of fulfilling it, then we are not honouring the Lord.
Whether you are struggling with a life filled with too many social activities, a curriculum that’s not working for you, extra commitments at church which are just too much for your situation, or whatever it may be, perhaps it’s time for you to stop, take a look at your circumstances, and cut back. You will avoid much guilt, heartache and stress if you carefully make choices about the commitments you make.
It’s better to do a few things very well than to try to do too many things not very well at all.
I pray that the Lord would give you and me wisdom to honour Him in our choices in life, day by day.
Submitted by Caroline Cordle FROM: www.thejoyfulkeeper.blogspot.com
Caroline is wife to Robert and mother to eight wonderful blessings. They serve The Lord in rural England, where Robert is pastor of a small Baptist Church (although Caroline is actually Scottish, quite different from “English”… Think “Canadian/American”). She has been home educating her children from the beginning, which she loves immensely. More important than anything else, she is a child of the King – saved by God’s grace alone. She loves The Lord, and the aim of her blog is to encourage other women in their walk with The Lord.