Sometimes life gets all but too much to handle. Workloads pile up, responsibilities expand, timelines crunch and expectations quadruple. And for some of us, normal life might even hover in this zone for extended periods even.
It is what we do in these exceptional periods that is fascinating to me. When the chips are down and nothing is going our way what is it that we tend to do with our time? I don’t know about you but for me I know exactly what I do:
ALL THE WRONG THINGS
So recently, I went through a crunchtime like this and I found myself getting more and more behind. I decided to track my time to see where it was going. The one obvious thing that popped out to me right away was that my work hours went from
45 – 50 hours a week to 70 or 80. This wasn’t a minor increase it was an almost doubling of my work hours. If I was working so much why was I getting so little done?! I also noticed that my workout routine dropped in half and my fun time (reading, gaming, etc) activities were all but irradicated.
But that wasn’t even the worst of it. My few hours with my wife completely vanished, my sleeptime went to 3 or 4 hours a night and my eating gravitated miraculously to 100% comfort foods. Worst of all my devotional Bible reading stopped completely. And my prayer time? What is this thing called prayer you speak of?
So take the stress away from this equation and look objectively at this pattern. Zero sleep, zero edifying communication, negative food inputs and no daily Godly interraction, this all spells disaster for anyone during the best of times let alone when the chips are down.
So why is it that we (or maybe I’m only speaking for myself here?!?) tend to think that in the stressful times we can throw away or normal operating procedures and redouble our efforts to fight our way through the situation? What is it that deceives us to make us believe that maybe if we jettison all the “inessentials” it will help solve the stressful situation we are in?
If we would be honest with ourselves maybe we’d realize and appreciate how we had already come to this level of quality already… by doing those “inessentials”. Prayer. Bible reading. Friends. Family.
But when the stressful times come we are less than logical and coherent in our thinking. That is why we need to draw our strength from God even more in the tough times than any other time in our lives. But doing that requires daily training and even ritual to carry us through those tough times that can so easily overwhelm the senses.
May the important things become more important and the trivial things become more trivial in your life today.