At the 2:1 Conference last weekend Heidi St. John said something I had forgotten in the hustle and bustle of running a household and homeschooling. She said there is no such thing as TIME management because time is going to do what time is going to do.
The only thing we can do is practice ME management.
This hit home for me because here on Raising Arrows I often talk about Time Management. I have an entire category on Time Management. And even though, I am a huge advocate of balancing your life and managing your home, I’m know there have been times when I have blamed “not enough time” for my own laziness or lack of balance in my day.
Heidi suggested making note of your “Time Bandits.” These are the things that if not kept in check will rob you of your time. These are not things like changing diapers or cooking, but rather the “unnecessary extras” of life.
I want to take this thought a bit further and suggest your worst Time Bandits are those you actually LIKE to do, but that end up stealing time away from you if you don’t approach them caution and balance.
Now, I’m not one to say if it’s a Time Bandit, you have to stop doing that activity, because I believe God gives us talents and leanings and gifts and within those is where we often find our hobbies and pastimes. So, I do not believe that if you are easily lost in paint and canvas for hours on end that you must never get out your paints in case you end up squandering an entire day.
So, what do you do when you lack ME Management in those areas of your life that tend to take over?
1. Pray for God’s hand of balance. I do this with my writing. I can easily get lost in writing blog post upon blog post. I have always been like this. Words on paper (or screen) are beautiful to me and I enjoy the crafting of them. But, they are also a weakness and the only way I can keep them in check is to ask the Lord to keep me in check. He is faithful! He keeps me balanced through my husband, my children, and sometimes even the entire shutting down of my computer!
2. Have a plan before you ever get started. Before you ever set foot in the sewing room or pull out the scrapbooking papers, give yourself boundaries. Set a timer if you need to. In many ways, it is freeing to know you are going to work this long on something you enjoy and then move on to something else. Plus, you avoid the guilt of “overdoing” it.
3. Give God the glory! I have found that the more worshipful I am in an activity I enjoy, the more likely I am to keep that activity in balance. If I am writing for Him, then the chance of ME getting mixed up in the deal is rare. Praise Him for the things you do well, praise Him for the little things you enjoy, praise Him for the time He allows for you to do those things. Everything you do in your day is worship. Worshiping the right Person keeps your priorities in the right place.
So, what “unnecessary extras” do you enjoy? Are you in a season that lends itself to being able to enjoy those things? Do you see your hobbies as a chance to worship and give glory to God? How has the Lord kept you in check lately?
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