unmade beds, dirty baseball pants, & deep breaths

April 19, 2016

Last night was a late one. Home around 10:30 with showers still to take, laundry to wash and dogs to walk.

The morning didn’t really start out much better. Everyone was moving oh so slowly yet in a hurry.

The puppy threw up in her crate so as I added yet another pair of not-so-white baseball pants to soak all day, I gingerly pulled out all the layers in her crate to wash. I swept a little, folded a few clothes and gathered up even more to be washed. With each little task, I tried to remind myself that even the little things I do are important to Him and the kingdom.

I think there needs to be somewhat of a balance though to all the little things in our lives.

On one hand, serving those we love through those little things every day brings Him much glory. It is true that service is near and dear to the heart of Jesus. However, we must remember that if we choose to let the little things overwhelm us and undo us to the point that we are weighted down with guilt and shame over all the little things that go undone, I am afraid we often end up paralyzed. The enemy has a way of stripping us of any energy we might still have when he overloads our minds and our hearts with feelings of inadequacy.

That is his plan.

To take normal, everyday, working or non-working people who love Jesus and load them down with whatever he can find to the point that they can’t move, much less be a worker for the kingdom. To load us down with the mundane daily chores and plans to the point that we not only feel inadequate, but really become inadequate as His followers.

I don’t know what your little things are, but I do know we all have them. Maybe yours is laundry. Or, closets to organize.  Or, the yard needing to be mowed. Or, a project at work. Or, ironing. Just about anything that you have left undone for whatever reason.  Sometimes the guilt of what I need to do far surpasses the joy of what I have already accomplished.

What if we prayed each morning and thanked God for the little things we face that day, but also asked Him to help us choose the things for today that are most important for His kingdom?

What if we realized the enemy’s schemes and just left the bed unmade and a few dishes in the sink so we could make it to our weekly Bible study today? Or, spend a little extra time in His word?

Yes, I think these little things matter and are in and of themselves good, but I am beginning to realize that they may not always be the best things.

There are so many good things we have the opportunity to do in this life that often times the enemy’s only tactic is to weigh us down with so many good things that we can’t find our way to the best things.

And, only His plans are best.

His things are THE most important.

His timing is far more perfect than mine.

Do as many little things as you can today for your family and for others, but please take time to think through how those little things might be weighing you down. And, yes, pray about finding Him today in the busyness and chaos of this week.

Yes, my bed is unmade today. Which is rare. You see, that one little thing makes me feel like my house is somewhat in order. If I walk out without making my bed, I often feel guilty for not fluffing the pillows and straightening the sheets because my husband likes the bed made. On afternoons where it hasn’t been made that morning, I feel so bad I normally rush inside and make the bed before I can do anything else.

Don’t get me wrong, I think a nice made bed is a good thing. But, I am not sure it is the best thing.

 I am slowly learning that whether or not my bed is made is not nearly as important as furthering His kingdom today.

Nor do my “I have soaked them six times” still stained white baseball pants. Nor does my Hamburger Helper from the box versus the great recipe that is the homemade version on Pinterest.

You see, in our world today, we are inundated from all sides with perfection.

People are constantly weighed down by what they ‘perceive’ others to be doing perfectly. By comparing themselves to what appears to be the best of them without realizing that they too may be choosing good over what is best. Feeling some guilt. And, a feeling of ‘less than’. Or, the weight the enemy continues to place on them.

Those feelings and ‘less than‘ moments aren’t always posted on Facebook or Instagram, now are they?

We see their little things done well and their big things that appear to be done perfectly. We think that they are able to pull off what might seem impossible to us some days with what appears to be great ease and effectiveness. And, again, the enemy takes our minds and our hearts and renders us completely ineffective.

It really is a vicious cycle if we allow it to be.

And, this could very well cause many of us to focus on perfecting all those things rather than on perfecting our relationship with Him and focusing on the best things.

Maybe, you too have felt the pains of ‘too busy‘ and ‘not enough‘ early in the week.

As I looked around my house there was not one spot that had not felt the effects of our late night. A call from my husband told me that the envelope with money I had prepared at eleven last night had probably not made it to school as one son was calling him to help find it. The laundry room looked as if a bomb had gone off from not-so-cute puppy remnants that once were two baseballs and a shoe. And, while jumping in my car and hurriedly backing out of the garage; I noticed the dog’s bowl with food on the hood.

Yes, that is how crazy my day began. But, rather than become undone again, my spirit slowed down a bit and I took a deep breath.

The radio was playing my favorite new song. Dog bowl and all. (And, I think my Father who cares about all of my little things planned that just for me today!) So, if you haven’t heard Jonny Diaz’s song, “Breathe,” here it is. One line in particular speaks straight to my heart…‘Lay down what’s good and find what’s best.’

He has also led me to this verse several times in the past few weeks. I think He may be trying to tell me something. Perhaps your heart needs to hear it as well.

“Be still and know that I am God, I will be exalted among the nations. I will be exalted in the earth.” {Psalms 46:10}

That is what I want. I want to be still and know. And, to find what’s best.

From the little, not-so-serious things to the big, very serious things.

That is all I want.

Just Jesus.

{For any of you who subscribe, if you should have trouble with the video link, please click the website link and view it all from With All Her Heart. I am sorry, but I am so not technical, friends!}


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