If I Plug My Ears, God Can’t Tell Me What to Do

Are we ready and listening for God’s next step in our lives?

Why I’ve let go of my dreams for a tiny house

If you’ve followed this blog for any length of time, you’ll be acquainted with my love of tiny houses. I can’t explain it, I understand it’s totally unreasonable, and yet I love them anyway.

 

why I've let go of my dreams of a tiny house

But sometime this last winter I finally let go of that dream because:

  1. Eric and the kids thought I was insane.
  2. The reality of a composting toilet for four people finally sank in.
  3. A private bedroom is good for married couples, and sharing a tiny house with teenagers makes that nearly impossible.

I finally acknowledged the tiny house wasn’t going to work, but then I just moved my sights slightly higher– three small bedrooms and a real bathroom. I just needed to find one close enough to the kids’ school.

My friends rightly pointed out that we’d moved out of a 900 square foot house a few years ago. I was going crazy in that place– what on earth would make me want to go back to another cramped house?

I understand my desire to downsize makes no sense. We truly did move out of a small house three years ago, and I couldn’t wait to escape that place. The day we moved out was an endless Happy Dance.

I couldn’t quite explain it, even to myself. I busied myself with some projects in our new home, and that squelched the desire for a time. But then, burning somewhere deep (possibly next to my spleen) was the constant and burning desire to downsize. I wanted less house and more available money. I wanted to be able to give wildly and generously, and to travel far and wide.

This is the closest explanation I can find– you know how some couples decide they’re done having children after their second baby? They give away the baby clothes, sell the crib, and get some surgical intervention. And then, beyond all reason, five years later they find themselves ready for a new baby. They get the vasectomy reversed or start filling out adoption paperwork.

It’s a desire deep inside that drives them, with no logic involved. They remember the sleepless nights and how difficult two year olds are! They haven’t lost their minds, but something deeper compels them.

And that’s how it was with me and downsizing. I hear the stories of people in Haiti and India. I realize many people are living in huts with metal roofs while monsoons rage in 100 degree heat. How can I continue living with two bathrooms and central air? Am I supposed to go on landscaping my yard in this planned community while a missionary school in India can barely afford to pay their teachers?

I finally asked Eric and the kids to pray about it with me. They weren’t totally on board, so I could see how this was possibly a new version of the tiny house ordeal. I was quite sure that after some prayer at least Eric would come around, because of course God was on my side. This desire fit in with the biblical ideals of sharing with those in need, so God and I held the holy cards.

I even had real life stories to back it up. My friend Amelia Rhodes did the same thing last year– sold a comfortable family home because of a simple desire to downsize. (You can read their story here.) And I recently read Amber C. Haines’ book Wild in the Hollow, and her family downsized into an apartment (with four little boys!) so they could be closer to their church community.

I’m not the only crazy one, is all I’m saying.

After three weeks of praying, the answer hit me hard and clear one morning. No. The answer isn’t moving to a smaller house. The answer is to stay right here, even with central air and two bathrooms.

I don’t understand why, exactly. I think it probably has something to do with being the aroma of Christ right here in this very neighborhood, where the children zip circles on their bikes and the families walk their children in strollers. It might have something to do with being involved in the schools, full of kids who need love and Christ. It could be that we’re called to be salt and light to this community, full of scrappy, independent (occasionally cranky) citizens.

I told Eric this a few days ago, and this was his response. “I feel like we prayed and felt led to be here. I don’t feel like that’s changed.” And the man is right. We didn’t land here without a lot of prayer.

It’s pretty clear that God plants his children all over the world. Some of us get the planned communities and central air and others of us get the monsoons and the huts. I don’t understand why. I don’t know why God doesn’t concentrate us, like an army, in the areas that need the most help. But he doesn’t ask me to have all the answers; I only need to be faithful in my own place and calling. I need to give as generously as we’re able right here, even with the larger mortgage and tax bill.

We can still be faithful right here. Although I have started negotiations for a tiny house in the backyard, because wouldn’t that be adorable?! It could be the Poopsie Hut! The Mom Cave! I could paint the walls sky blue and hide from children and writing deadlines.

I wouldn’t even need a composting toilet. Perfect.

 

 

God is going to do whatever he wants, and I’m prepared to work with that.

I feel like God’s preparing me to one day write a book titled God Is Going To Do Whatever He Wants, and I Am Prepared to Work With That.

Catchy, no?

It would totally fit with my tradition of book titles that are impossible to type quickly.

(This is why I have editors. They reel me in before I get too weird.) ((But blogs don’t have editors so I can write whatever I want.))
ANYWAY. WE HAVE BIG NEWS, so let’s get to it. I’ve been offered a new contract to write another book! Kregel Publications has accepted my proposed book for stressed out Christian women. If you’re a subscriber to my email list, you already know all this. (This is one of the perks of being on the email list– you get the exciting news first! Click here if you’d like to join.)

big news, new book!

But back to my title at the beginning of this post– truly, God is going to do whatever he wants. And I have decided that I’m prepared to work with whatever he brings my way. I did not expect this book proposal to have life after this long wait. I had laid it to rest and tried to figure out what to do with the rest of my life.

Meanwhile, God was waiting for… I don’t know what. I have no idea. I know it’s been a long and gritty season of quiet, but that’s only what I can see from here. I have no idea what has been going on above and beyond this earthly spot.

I do know this. I had given up on writing as I knew it, but I hadn’t given up on God. I knew he may have changed directions or stilled my work, but I that didn’t mean he had abandoned me. After I cried a little (okay, a lot) about failing him, I waited for whatever new thing he had planned.

And you know what? It turns out he planned a new version of the old thing. The writing wasn’t dead at all, it was just taking its time.

And you, my friend who may be waiting for your own new thing– I’m praying for you today. I’m praying for the job news, or the baby news, or the letter from the school of your choice. Of course I’m praying that you’re on exactly the right track and ready to move with God, but I’m also praying that his plan will bring you peace, even if the outcome isn’t one you would prefer.

I started Plug My Ears with this passage from Isaiah 55:8-9, and I think it fits today beautifully:

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.”

Amen, amen, amen.

To Detroit and back, just like a grown up.

I did several very exciting things this weekend. Let me list the minutia for you:

  1. Drove to Detroit all by myself. Did not get lost. (Siri may be responsible for this.)
  2. Fell asleep for an hour in my minivan. The experience was kind of sketchy– I was an hour early to check in to the hotel, but my head hurt from this sinus thing that won’t go away, so I decided to close my eyes in the back seat while I was parked in the hotel lot. “Closing my eyes” turned into a deep sleep that stole an hour of my life. I woke up disoriented and groggy and a little uncomfortable that I can sleep in a minivan without a pillow or blanket or anything. What am I, a hippy? Weird.
  3. Checked into the hotel all by myself.
  4. Stayed in the hotel all by myself. Never in my life have I spent a night in a hotel without one or many family members/friends/random strangers assigned to the room. I had two beds, a bathroom, a TV, and a couch all to myself. It was delicious and lonely. I hated and loved it. 
  5. Ate breakfast with famous people. Well, famous might not be quite the word. I ate breakfast with the other speakers at the conference I was attending, and they all speak around the world and have approximately 1,293 books published. Topics of discussion included travel to Africa to teach the Bible, and also men shaving their armpits before getting into a hot tub. I’ll just leave you with your questions. Really, you don’t want to know.
  6. Attended a conference with 1,200 attendees. Was interviewed at this conference in front of those same 1,200 attendees.
  7. Did not pass out during interview, thanks to the wonderful crowd and the amazing support of the other conference presenters.
  8. Drove back home in the rain, after having dinner with my brother and sister-in-law. Did not get lost or fall asleep at the wheel after an exhausting day.

So, to summarize, God ran me through the list of things I wrote about in my book, Plug My Ears. I was invited to the 1-Day Bible Conference by Our Daily Bread Ministries, and I left my comfort zone. I went in my weakness, my fear, and my distinct understanding that only God himself could qualify me to be included in such an event. I was anxious and on edge for weeks before the event, not at all sure why I was even included. I don’t have a mega ministry or a degree from a prestigious school. I don’t speak to crowds around the world or even small groups in Kalamazoo.

I had nothing to offer this crowd except my willingness to obey God and then talk about it in front of aaaaaallllllllllll the people.


Ohmyword. So many people.

But I sat up there on the stage when it was my turn and I brought everything I had, which was basically nothing but my weirdness and my love for Jesus. I told stories about my small group and how I want to be a dirty hippy who lives in a tiny house.

The crowd, which was mostly African American and over the age of 50, both thought I was nuts and funny. I know this because my brother and sister-in-law were planted in one of the rows, listening to the crowd while no one knew we were related.

After our segment, Sheila Bailey and I were directed to the back where we met with people and signed books. This was mildly hilarious because Sheila B is like a rock star to this particular crowd, she herself being African American and over 50. I had about four people who wanted me to sign one of my books (and three people who brought me books to sign that I hadn’t written– moments of true embarrassment for everyone), while a line formed for Sheila that was about twenty people deep for a half hour.


I decided to chat with the ladies waiting to meet Sheila, and we had amazing conversations. We talked about Detroit and the neighborhoods that are slowly coming back to life, and how they need more small groups sharing life to flourish. We talked about being a female corrections officer in a male prison. We talked about our families and ministries and churches.

It was beautiful. And none of it required an advanced degree from seminary or 1,293 book contracts.

Why do I always make things so complicated? Why do I look for weird proof that I can go and love people, and they can love in return?

I left the church relieved that I’d survived. But I also left filled up, blessed by all the prayers and kinds words and shared stories.

And today I write this from my couch, back in my comfort zone and cookie pants. My encouragement to you is this– if God is calling you to it, go ahead and join him. Don’t second guess his reasons or your qualifications. Just go and meet the people. Share the stories. Join the fun.

Don’t make it more complicated than God himself is making it.

And let me know how it all works out!

College Debt: Yikes. (But here’s a good resource for us all!)

Have you noticed the rising problem of college debt lately?

Eric and I graduated from college many years ago, shortly after the horse and buggy fell out of fashion, but just before women won the right to vote. I believe Chester A. Arthur may have been President.

Just kidding. It was only about 17-15 years ago, depending on which one of us you’re quizzing over our educational history, and Clinton was definitely President. But in those years a lot has changed about college– mostly the price.

The kids and I spent some time at an educational Expo last week, so I’ve been in college planning mode for days. Our county now has a cooperative between the local school districts and the community college, giving our students an opportunity to dual enroll in high school and college classes. If they complete the program they leave a “5th” year of high school with an associates degree they don’t have to pay a dime for.

Not only is the degree completely free, the options are fabulous!

The kids will be able to tailor their studies to things they’re especially interested and gifted in, which is one trillion times better than slogging through some advanced math class they’ll never use again. It sounds like Kalamazoo County isn’t the only one doing this sort of Early Middle College, so check out the options where you live. It might save you $80,000,000.

Or whatever two years of college costs.

how to pay for collegeDon’t worry. We have a helpful book to the rescue.

But also, I found a book called Beating the College Debt Trapby Alex Chediak, (affiliate link) in our local library this weekend. If you have tweens or teens, just go ahead and buy the book. It’s written to the prospective students, giving them loads of advice on wise educational choices. Advice like this:

What’s at stake here? Nothing less than the rest of your life. Going to college is the most expensive decision you’ve ever made. The consequences of how you pay for it will be with you into your twenties, thirties, and beyond. Will you be able to take that dream job you’d love to have but that doesn’t pay well? Buy a house someday? Get married? Start having kids? Stay home with your kids? Start a business? Leave for the mission field? Today you either set yourself up for success or failure. Freedom or bondage. Peace or stress. You decide. (from Beating the College Debt Trap, pg. 19)

These are some of the exact things we talk about in If I Plug My Ears, God Can’t Tell Me What to Do. The choices we make today affect how much room we have to follow God in the years to come. Of course a good education is vital, but it doesn’t have to come from a four year program that costs $80,000,000. We never know what God will bring to our future, so it’s always wisest to spend wisely.

(I seem to be stuck on eighty million dollars today. It’s the number of the day, I guess.)

But anyway, Chediak gives us things to think about before it’s too late. Go find his book and start talking with your kids. They’ll roll their eyes now, but thank you profusely all through their 20s and 30s.

When your plans take a sharp left turn, right off a cliff

Somewhere in mid-December, Eric and I had the next five or so months all planned out.

Aren’t we just adorable? Isn’t it cute how we make plans and then assume these things will happen?

Of course it all hit the toilet. All our plans disintegrated into a pile of squashy glop. It all started when Eric couldn’t avoid a tire that was lurking on the entrance ramp to the freeway. He smashed into it, and what should have been a busted bumper and a week in the shop turned into a totaled car and five weeks until a check was issued.

So then we bought a car from a friend, but that took the money we’d set aside for braces, but then we learned we have more dental insurance to cover the braces than we thought, but then sickness overtook us and what was left of our financial plans was swallowed up with sick days, and I’m sure your eyes are glazed over now with these silly details.

Even my eyes are glazed over. Let me get to my point.

The Clemence family is gingerly sitting right in the middle of what we shall call “Waiting for God’s Plan, Since Our Plan Is In the Toilet.” We aren’t sure what’s next on the agenda. It’s like we’re at the bus stop, with literally nothing to do until the bus pulls up and takes us to our next destination.

And you know what? It’s not so bad. Operating without a plan isn’t nearly as upsetting as I thought it would be. Waiting patiently for God just takes a reminder or two or three hundred every day, where I point out to myself that I don’t make the world spin so maybe I should just calm down and sit on the bench and watch the world go by.

If your plans have also recently taken a dive off the cliff, I welcome you right here on this bus stop bench. We can sit together and keep each other company. There’s plenty of room and lots to talk about while we wait. God’s next bus is due any minute now…

waiting for God

 

It’s possible she’s making up the truth as she goes along

I just finished an excellent book. Normally I’d tell you the name of it, but I have some concerns.

First of all, I’m about to seriously question the writer’s theology, faith, and ability to handle the Word of God. Since the sister has enough issues without me attacking her on the internet too (I’m not the first to have some concerns), I’ll keep mum on her name.

Second of all, even though the book is indeed excellently written, hysterically funny, and a total joy to behold, I don’t know that I’m comfortable recommending it to anyone who doesn’t have a firm grasp on the Bible.

The Bible does indeed come up in her book, many times. The writer loves Jesus and has some keen– but uncomfortable–insights on how his followers should be conducting themselves. For example, when Christ tells us to love one another and to care for our neighbor, are we actually doing that? Or are we gathering ourselves into pious little groups and carefully excluding anyone who might contaminate us?

You know, just like the religious leaders of Jesus’ day did? The ones he publicly challenged and called hypocrites and children of hell?

Ouch.

These sorts of insights were so true and right I gasped out loud a few times as I read. She has a firm grasp on God’s love and what it requires as we relate to one another.

But then things got sticky, because I believe God’s love must be balanced with God’s truth. Sin is a terrible thing– it keeps us from God. A holy God cannot tolerate sin, and a holy God gets to determine what is sin and what is not.

Not us.

We don’t get to adore or ignore clear Scripture based on how comfortable or uncomfortable it is to us personally. Yes, there are cultural issues and historical events we might not apply on a daily basis (see also: women being silent in church and/or building an ark and waiting for animals to show up).

2 Timothy 3:5

But the clear parts– the parts about loving God, repenting of sin, and loving others– the parts no one can refute because they are so simple even children understand them, those we don’t get to rearrange to our comfort. As God’s people, we submit to his truth. We don’t bend it to fit our circumstances.

Here’s my point. We must be reading the Bible. We must have it open in front of our faces as much as possible, because otherwise it is terribly easy for a gregarious and charming person to lead us close to nice ideas, but actually far from God.

A lot of readers who enjoyed the book probably don’t read the Bible very often. They are blindly following the interpretations and whims of a woman who has neglected some key portions of the Word. And they are being tragically led astray.

Let’s not be those readers. Let’s immerse ourselves first in the Bible, so we will have the knowledge we need to discern the truth from the opinions.

Thoughts?

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people. (2 Timothy 3:1-5)

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It’s Not All Up to Us (just in case you need a reminder)

Sometimes God still surprises me. You? Does he still surprise you, too?

I’ve been working really hard at a few things lately and seeing small outcomes. Instead of getting upset at the results I’ve been trying to release them into God’s hands. God’s work, God’s plans, God’s outcomes, I tell myself.

Doesn’t that sound really holy of me? Like perhaps I should have my head turned into a marble statue and placed prominently in Christian colleges worldwide?

Don’t worry. It’s 100% less holy than it could be, because I spend equal amounts of time trying to pluck my eyeballs from my face because I’m so frustrated at the lack of results.

In small group we’ve been working through Francis Chan’s study Forgotten God, and these verses in Zechariah were highlighted last week:

Then he said to me, “This is what the Lord says to Zerubbabel: It is not by force nor by strength, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. Nothing, not even a mighty mountain, will stand in Zerubbabel’s way; it will become a level plain before him! And when Zerubbabel sets the final stone of the Temple in place, the people will shout: ‘May God bless it! May God bless it!’

Then another message came to me from the Lord: “Zerubbabel is the one who laid the foundation of this Temple, and he will complete it. Then you will know that the Lord of Heaven’s Armies has sent me. Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin, to see the plumb line in Zerubbabel’s hand.” (Zechariah 4: 6-10, NLT. Click here to read it on bible gateway.com)

I’ve had to sit with this passage for an entire week, just reading it over and over again. Zerubbabel had been given a big assignment, one that required his actual work and involvement.

But it wasn’t his work or strength that was really going to accomplish anything, it was the Spirit. It’s the Spirit that makes mountainous challenges level before us.

Not us, the Spirit.

I’ve asked God to give me peace with the results from my efforts, and I’ve asked him for this countless times. It really is a never-ending battle I’m waging here.

And then today I got an email with an amazing and exciting offer to be part something fun, something far better than the results I could have hoped for. I haven’t had a chance to confirm the details yet, but I do know this– God is working out his own plan and outcomes in his own time.

I’ll let you know the news when I have more information, but I leave you with this encouragement today– It’s not by our force, but by God’s Spirit!

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Think you’re stuck in life? Think again!

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I’ve been slowly making my way through My Life in France, by Julia Child and Alex Preud’homme. (If you’ve seen  the movie Julie & Julia, you have a good idea of the book.)  Julia and her Alex, her nephew-in-law, went back through old letters and memories and then transcribed them into a pure delight of a book.

Did you know Julia didn’t move to Paris until she was 36 years old? She didn’t really find her love of cooking until she was 37! Raised in a wealthy Californian family, she grew up with cooks who turned out all sorts of bland American food, so the art of excellent cooking with fresh ingredients was foreign to her. Her love of these things caught her off guard.

She discovered them by taking risks, trying new things, and then working really hard until she perfected them.

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Let’s all be more like Julia, shall we? Let’s try that new recipe or craft project. Let’s start writing that book or planning that trip or designing that new business. It’s never to late to find what we really love, what God has for the next season of our lives.

Don’t be discouraged if early attempts are pitiful and awful and a little bit humiliating. That’s part of the fun! Here’s proof:

The first meal I ever cooked for Paul was a bit more ambitious: brains simmered in red wine! I’m not quite sure why I picked that particular dish, other than that it sounded exotic and would be a fun way to impress my new husband. …In fact, the dinner was a disaster. Paul was unfailingly patient, but years later he’d admit to an interviewer, “Her first attempts were not altogether successful…I was brave because I wanted to marry Julia. I trust I did not betray my point of view.” (pg. 6)

Julia Child cooked brains simmered in wine for her first married meal. And it was ghastly.

If she can goof it up like this, so can we. She eventually became a world-famous chef and now her kitchen is on display in the National Museum of American History.

All because she didn’t give up after that brains-in-wine debacle. So let’s stop with the excuses and get to the next thing God has for us, shall we?

 

Ireland: The Distance Between Here and There Is Sort of Backwards

It’s a very good thing that traffic in Ireland is pretty much like here in the United States. Opposed, say, to Rome, where they drive like lunatics and park (as Bill Bryson says) like they spilled a beaker of hydraulic acid on their laps.

Traffic on an Irish road

In Ireland they tend to drive carefully and park almost normally. With some careful study of how they handle roundabouts and write traffic signs, Eric was all set to go.

The fact that they drive on the other side of the road didn’t bother him a bit. He relished the challenge. It was like the Olympic event for men who like impossible driving.

An Irish driver's seat

I, on the other hand, thought for sure we were going to die in a fiery crash. It took almost a week before I realized oncoming traffic was going to stay where they belonged, and not cross into our path and send us straight to our eternal rewards from a Renault.

Since Eric was the superstar driver (I don’t say that lightly– the man even managed perfect parallel parking in tiny Irish parking spaces), I was the navigator. I had a lap full of maps and our little phone in case things got dicey. I tried to navigate as much as possible from the paper map, because sometimes I like to pretend it’s still 1988 and technology hasn’t yet taken over our lives.

a paper map of Ireland

(Also, overusing data on an international excursion can cause bankruptcy. We didn’t want to chance that.)

But sometimes the rural roads got the best of us and we had to resort to the blue dot on Google. You can read a map all you want, but if you don’t know where you actually are, the map is not so helpful.

We kept running into these intersections that didn’t quite meet up. Five roads would come to a general meeting area, but it was hard to tell if we should go slightly to the left or slightly to the right.

The blue dot would move along the road we had chosen, showing us exactly where we were and where we were headed. Without that blue dot we would still be somewhere in the Irish countryside, sleeping with the cows, too lost to ever find our way back to America.

I find I need a little blue dot in my regular life, too. I need a moral compass, a way to tell exactly when I’m on or off track. For me, that blue dot is the Bible. It’s where I go to find truth. It’s where I go to remind myself I’m not as important as I think I am. It’s where I go when I don’t know what to do, or when I do know what to do but need a little kick in the pants to do it.

I can’t make up my own personal code of ethics any more than I can tell which road takes me to Cork. I believe in absolute truth, and that is a far different thing than Jessie Decides What’s Best.

I’ve found my blue dot for life. What about you?

But you must remain faithful to the things you have been taught. You know they are true, for you know you can trust those who taught you. You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work. (2 Timothy 3:14-17, NLT)

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Because I Want My Life to Be More Than Perfectly Sorted Socks

At this moment I have a pile of laundry about two feet high thrown all over my bed. The plan is simple: I literally can’t get into bed tonight until the pile is gone. I guess I could throw the clean clothes all over the floor and then go to bed anyway, but then I’d just wake up angry in the morning at the mess all over the rug.

This photo was not staged. This is real life, my friends.
This photo was not staged. This is real life, my friends.

I hate to wake up any angrier than I usually do, so I’ll fold these things that have been waiting in baskets all week. Even then, my laundry management techniques are pretty lax. I toss all the kids’ things into individual baskets so they can fold their own stuff, throw all the socks and underwear into piles–one for me, one for Eric– fold the towels in a less than precise fashion, and then hang what I can.

The end.

Repeat twice weekly.

When I was first married I lovingly folded each pair of underwear and rolled every pair of socks. It was my love for Eric that blinded me to the fact that this is a terrible waste of a life. Who cares if my socks are sorted and rolled? Who cares if the underwear is stacked in a military-precise fashion? Eric certainly wasn’t asking me to micromanage his underpinnings.

I realize now that life should be more than perfectly sorted socks.

I want my life to matter, I want my life to reflect the talents and gifts God has given me, and I want to live it to the fullest. I want an abundant life, and I’m pretty sure that happens somewhere outside the sock drawer.

Not that socks and laundry can’t be part of a larger picture. I know mothers for generations have slaved over the laundry pile because this is a way we care for our families. Clean clothing=I love you. It’s servanthood and love in one linen-scented stack, an endless procession of small things that eventually equals a life of Christ-likeness. I get that.

But I think sometimes we focus on the small things because we’re trying to distract ourselves from the abundant life God is really calling us to. While I gave up on laundry perfection around 2001, I’ve let a host of other things distract me in the intervening years. I’ve let jobs interfere with God’s plan (reference the Great Pumpkin Farm Debacle of 2010), I’ve let social media snatch away my time for priorities (reference every day since 2011), and I’ve let my own fear talk me out of responding in faith.

Just this week I’ve dithered and stalled, procrastinated and over scheduled. While I should have had my butt in a chair so I could start writing my next book proposal, I’ve focused on a myriad of tiny and insignificant details.

By the way, my dishes are done and I even rearranged the junk drawer this morning.

By the way, I still haven’t started that book proposal, which is key to the abundant life Jesus is calling me to.

I was made for more than junk drawers and socks. I was made to love others and communicate God’s love through the written word. You were made for more than petty distractions, my friend. You are more than your social media accounts and your Pinterest-worthy crafts. You have your very own abundant life waiting for you, if only you’ll focus on the One who wants to give it to you.

So, what is it? Do you know? What’s waiting for you on the other side of the sock pile?

I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.~ Jesus (Matthew 10:10)

It's a complete and utter miracle that I found a few pairs of matching socks.
It’s a complete and utter miracle that I found a few pairs of matching socks.

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