Tuesday, November 29, 2011


I'm back...from Texas. From vacation. Back to wifi, and blogging.=)
We had a wonderful trip. I got lots of "sib" time. It was the first time in over three years that we had all been together. And we made the most of it. Lots of good food, conversation and laughs. My sister, Brian and I ran in a race in Dallas on Thanksgiving day. It was a huge event! Almost 40,000 people. I finished within my time window, but I didn't finish as strong as I wanted because I had leg cramps in the last mile. But I am glad that I did it.
And now I am wondering just where November went? The month that I really don't like. It's practically gone. And we're jumping full speed ahead into Christmas. My favorite station has been playing Christmas music for weeks now. Needless to say, I boycotted them for a while, but now that Thanksgiving has breezed by, I can be okay with Christmas music. But the Christmas season as a whole can be overwhelming. The presents-shopping, making, wrapping (give me some tape to sniff)- the get togethers, Christmas programs and concerts, all on top of regular life-school, BSF, church, four kids.
Before we left on vacation I saw a diagram that was strangely enlightening, and encouraging, and helpful. It is by a guy named Stephen Covey and it looks like this.

Every activity in our lives fits into one of these categories: urgent/important, non-urgent/important, not important/urgent, not important/not-urgent. We all can think of Q1 stuff-baby needing fed, house burning down, making dinner, paying bills. Things that have to happen now! Q-2 stuff is exercise, family time, paying those bills before they are due, reading, school, writing this blog. Q-3 stuff is like answering the phone instead of screening phone calls.=) Q-4 stuff would constitute things like Facebook and web surfing. Most people tend to spend their time doing Q-1 and Q-4 activities. Living in crisis mode between time wasters. If you spend all your time in Q-1 you feel as if you are always behind the ball, under the gun, and putting out fires. This is not the way to live. Stephen Covey's revolutionary idea is to spend the majority of your time doing Q-2 activities. We want to spend time doing prevention activities-like brushing your teeth.=) Or relationship building activities-like time with family and friends. Investing in people, not just being busy. Not just checking Christmas gifts off a list a mile long. Taking time to plan your day/week, and laying it before the Lord for multiplied time, and flexibility as necessary. Exercising to get those endorphins flowing. Investing in our children's future, and fulfilling our responsibilities by schooling and maximizing teachable moments. Those moments when they are most prepared to hear and apply the truth. Doing things we enjoy-like blogging, cooking, singing, reading, sleeping.=) Cleaning the house. But also realizing that some cleaning should fit into the Q-3 or Q-4 categories. Under the fridge doesn't need to be edible clean every week. Dusting can wait until tomorrow-just like that poem says. Can you tell that time, and not enough time has been on my mind a lot lately?  I was thinking last night about scheduling, and how I am confident that most of what I'm doing is what God wants me to do. Even knowing that God transcends time, and multiplies time, it just seems like there is far too much on my plate. But I think the balance is going to come in the more I live in the reality that I can't, NOT I can. I know that God calls, equips and stretches. I don't have to rely on me to get through.
So, my goal for this holiday season is to focus on the quiet. The important, but not urgent. To take deep breaths, and enjoy this month. Love on my family. Enjoy our traditions. Be a blessing.
Not too bad=)
Thanks, Mr. Covey.