Why We Need to Just Stop Sometimes

“Hurry up!”

“Brush your teeth!”

“Let’s go, we are running late!”

They may or may not have gotten in a fight in the bathroom over a brush, and I may or may not have lost it. Yelling they needed to love each other.

The youngest can’t find his shoes and the oldest continues to cause trouble with his brother.

And then I am not sure where I put my keys.

And in 15 minutes, I am supposed to help at VBS. At church, where I put on a smile and pretend all is well in the world. Pretend I didn’t just loose it. Pretend I have it all together.

Sometimes stopping and breathing brings abundant love into your soul. Because sometimes we forget: “But as people sinned more and more, God’s wonderful kindness become more abundant” Romans 6:20.

In a moment I loose track of the bigger picture. In a moment I forget it’s more important how I love than what I get done.

Does this happen to you? Oh how the enemy loves to get us sidetracked.

I have learned in-order to truly be authentic we have to believe love is more important than efficiency. We have to begin to operate from this place of love rather than our to-do list.

The greatest example of this is in my parenting. Often times I find myself more preoccupied with what they are eating, is the lotion I put on their skin toxic, are they getting enough exercise, am I disciplining them enough, or, are they being polite rather than loving them in the moment. I become more consumed with what others think of my parenting than how I am truly loving them. The how I care for them is trumping my love for them.

Is this not what happens in many areas of our lives?  Even ministry inside church walls? More occupied with what we are doing rather than who we are doing it for. We forget to love the people around us. Forget to love the people helping us. Forget to bring comfort and healing to the hurting because it may slow us down.

What’s at Stake?

When we live from a place of efficiency rather than love we are weary, disappointed, and often times burned out. What we do is never enough and what others do is really never enough. The outcome becomes more important than love and we start doing and being to produce rather than love. And if we are not careful we will wake up one day living the life we were never intended to live because over and over again we sacrificed our heart’s desire on the altar of efficiency.

We slowly erode our truest self to fit into the mold around us. Costing us the very thing we love the most…relationships.

We find ourselves working for His approval rather than from His approval.

It’s truly a battle.

Yesterday it happened again life got crazy. I was distracted and found myself in a mom-timeout.

Love has to outweigh efficiency

Day by day our choices shape who we are. Do not let fear govern your choices, but rather than love.

Are you loving people for who they truly are or what they can produce? Has the to-do-list trumped your relationships?

Maybe you are in need of a timeout to leave space for your soul to breath to remind yourself of why you are living.

Our journey starts in abiding in His never-ending love and functioning from this place.

Are you living from a place of being enough in Him? Or are you striving to be more than enough to produce rather than rest in Him? Is love your driving force or efficiency?

Has your mission, goal, check-list, dream, trumped loving the people around you?

Today I remind myself not everything needs to get done on the check list and it’s ok if I a little late, if it means I loved the very ones in front of me. Because see “the life you build that no one sees is the most important part of your life.” Shauna Niequist


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