Encouragement for Today - September 30, 2011


Lynn Cowell

September 30, 2011

Why Am I in Such a Hurry?
Lynn Cowell

"This is how the lampstand was made: It was made of hammered gold—from its base to its blossoms. The lampstand was made exactly like the pattern the LORD had shown Moses." Numbers 8:4 (NIV)

During the thirty-minute drive downtown, I felt nothing but irritation. Who has time for driving school? Yes, I had received two tickets in the past three years, but I was going to change. Slowing down was on my agenda!

As soon as I found a seat, my computer-like brain turned on, allowing me to multi-task while sitting in the tiny classroom. Three "mental windows" were running: my to-do list for the day; my to-do list for the upcoming holiday; and my to-do list for a home project.

Honestly, that class could not end fast enough. Finally, when I was free to leave, I rushed out of the building. Looking down at my watch, I realized I had one hour to run to the carpet store, pick out the right color and get to the bus stop before my kids did. The store was almost 30 minutes away, but I knew I could do it.

I found the perfect color carpet and was on my way home in no time. Threw the car into reverse and...BOOM! Looking in my rearview mirror, I discovered my bumper curved around a 15-foot cement store sign. All I could do was lay my head on my steering wheel and cry, "Lord, this can't be the way You want my days to go!"

I was exhausted from the mental and physical pace I'd set for myself. I knew God had a better plan. Around that same time I was reading in Numbers 8:4, and was amazed at how God took time to attend to the details of a simple lampstand. The Bible tells us it was created out of gold with blossoms at the top. God wasn't just concerned about the function of the lampstand but also its beauty.

I knew then that if God cared about these types of details, He cared about the details of my life, too. I also realized I needed to slow down enough to seek His plans for my days, instead of cramming them with everything on my own hurried agenda.

I decided that each morning I would start praying through my schedule. Sometimes He'd show me I had too much I was trying to accomplish in too little time. Other days He'd show me I needed to say "no" to some things so I could enjoy what He had called me to say "yes" to, instead of just flying through it.

Perhaps you too are caught in the frenzy of trying to get everything done. Do you ever lay awake at night wondering if you'll finish the tasks on your list? I want to encourage you to try something that has helped me. Tomorrow, before your feet hit the ground, tell the Lord: "This is Your day, not mine. Whatever You want me to do, I will do. Whatever You don't want me to do, I won't."

Throughout the day, as your desire to get more done in less time moves in, and stress tries to take over, repeat your prayer. Soon you'll discover that handing the details of your day over to God will lead you out of chaos and into His plans for peace and purpose in your life!

By no means is my life perfect now, but most of my days are surrendered to the Lord's plans rather than the busyness of my own. And, I'm learning more and more how to live according to God's beautiful timing and pattern for my life each day.

Dear Lord, every day there seems to be so much that has to get done and so little time. I know that living life stressed and frustrated is not what You created me for. Please help me each day to only do what You want me to do and not try to do more. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
His Revolutionary Love: Jesus' Radical Pursuit of You by Lynn Cowell — Purchase this phenomenal bundle of book, CD & DVD today!

I Used to Be So Organized: Help for Reclaiming Order and Peace by Glynnis Whitwer

Visit Lynn's blog where she discusses ways to slow down so we might enjoy those around, especially our children. And, she is giving away a copy of Glynnis's new book, I Used to Be So Organized

When you purchase resources through Proverbs 31 Ministries, you touch eternity because your purchase supports the many areas of hope-giving ministry we provide at no cost. We wish we could, but we simply can't compete with prices offered by huge online warehouses. Therefore, we are extremely grateful for each and every purchase you make with us. Thank you!

Application Steps:
One a sheet of paper, create three columns. Label the first: Things No One Else Can Do. Label the second: Things I Do, but Could Delegate; and the third: Things I Choose to Do. Carefully place the things that fill your life in the appropriate column. Over the next week, use this as your prayer list, asking the Lord which of these things He wants to stay on the list, which He wants delegated and which He wants completely removed.

This is Your day Jesus, not mine. Whatever You want me to do, I will do. Whatever You don't, I won't.

Power Verses:
Colossians 3:17, "And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him." (NIV)

© 2011 by Lynn Cowell. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105

Originally published Friday, 30 September 2011.