Does anyone else lie in bed at night rehearsing the day and wish they had done pretty much everything better?
I’m a doer. I do the “gitterdone” mentality really well. I attack my to-do list with gusto and a lot of frustration. I consistently think I can accomplish way more than is possible in a day. A friend calls it “list righteousness.” Pride in our ability to get things done. Unfortunately we have all these people and circumstances that mess with our list righteousness. Drat.
Okay…I’m gonna get a bit spiritual. I hope you don’t mind. My single mommy self just can’t survive without Jesus. I know it sounds a bit cliché, but my days just seem to go better when I pray about things. I’m kinder, gentler, wiser, and more patient when I spend time praying and reading the Bible.
Regrettably I don’t often take the time to do either. There’s just so much to do. I’m often jumping out of bed – well, maybe sliding slowly with deep reservation would be more accurate – starting my day with nary a thought of God. I do remember to pray things like, “Lord, please help me find Lizzie’s other shoe in the next 30 seconds or we’ll be late,” and “Lord, please forgive me for getting frustrated and yelling at my kids about dumb stuff.”
At night, when I evaluate my day, I’m pretty much always disappointed. I let at least one child down, had a bad attitude at some point, and didn’t make a nutritious and enjoyable dinner. There’s still lots of laundry to trip over in the hall, papers to be looked at, signed, mailed, or filed, and people I forgot to call back, appointments I should’ve made months ago, and deadlines I’ve missed because I can’t keep track of anything anymore! Those are my nightly taunts.
Once again I’ve tried to do it all myself – tried to look like I’m the single mom extraordinaire. Fail.
There are going to be days when things fall apart…maybe every day. Most days are going to have their disappointments – unless I go to bed at noon and that’s still plenty of time for masses of mistakes. I know God can but doesn’t always choose to make my day go smoothly.
I’m learning that it’s where I find my identity, my strength, my perspective, my hope. Is my strength from the gym? Nope. Is my perspective from the world – that my home and self should be beautiful, calm, and productive? Nope. Is my hope in the dream that eventually I will get it all done in a timely and lovely manner? Nope.
My hope is simply and completely in Christ - that He’ll use this day and all its successes and failures to make me better the next day. That everything I need for life has already been given to me. I have Him and His strength, wisdom, and peace to guard my heart and mind throughout the day. That’s a pretty good foundation for success.
Maybe at dinner, I’ll read some Bible verses with my children. Maybe before I drag my weary, sleep-deprived self out of bed, I’ll take a moment to pray. Maybe I’ll read something for myself as well. If I believe that it will really help, and I do, I’ve gotta turn my maybes into realities.
Tonight I’m praying that I can focus on thanking God for all the blessings of the day even if I didn’t get to check off a ton on my to-do list!