London life has a habit of running at breakneck speed. Even with the slower pace of homemaking and stay-at-home mothering, all too often life seems hectic and frenzied. I spring from one responsibility to another... I seek to parent purposefully... I seek to prioritise my marriage... I chase my tail and fall into bed in the evenings feeling little of the satisfaction and soul-rest that I long to feel.
This past year has been a particularly busy season of life. Ava adores school; she is thriving there... but the strict school routine still feels like an unwelcome intruder in our lives. We hurry out the door every morning, we have a few hours before we scurry back, and then evening draws near, the day is gone and our lives suddenly seem to be dictated to by a timetable. It's necessary... its good training... it's the reality of life, but it has made our days seem shorter and the weeks fly by at a speed that leaves me gasping for breath.
And all this while, I have thought... "the summer is coming!"
Norway. Freedom, fresh air, open fjords, majestic mountains, time in excess... no responsibilities, no necessities... space.
And it has fulfilled... all of the above. We have drunk in the fresh air, swam the icy waters of the fjords, clambered part way up majestic mountains and taken time... so much time.
And yet, deep inside my soul, there is still that hectic frenzy.
I am not at peace.
And I realise that it is not nature's beauty that will ever leave me feeling satisfied; beautiful and awe-inspiring that it is... it's gift of peace is momentary and fleeting. It is not time and space to relax that will bring me what my soul craves... it is not my family who can give me that deep assurance of who I am and what my purpose is.
It is only Jesus.
I have used my busyness these past weeks as an excuse.... I have prioritised the things that I thought would bring me joy and peace... and they have not.
The fact is, whatever season I am in... soul-rest is a choice.
To spend time, in the quiet moments, at the feet of the Saviour... resting... praying... meditating on his word. To drink deep the words of scripture... to pray God's promises over my little ones... to raise my eyes and remember those around the world who are suffering... to listen to the still small voice that reminds me...
"You are not your own, you are bought at a price... find your rest in me"
I write this with tears of thankfulness in my eyes. Because even as I type, these words sink - slowly, deeply, healing my soul... breathing life... breathing hope. Claiming forgiveness.
Friend... if you are caught in the trap of busyness... choose to find rest for that much-loved, highly-treasured soul of yours...
And feast on the words of our Saviour...
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest - Matthew 11:28
... and whisper with me...
"Thank you Jesus..."
Truly my soul finds rest in God;
My salvation comes from Him
- Psalm 62:1 -
Some helpful resources on the theme of soul-rest...
* Psalm 62 The Bible
* This fantastic and helpful article by John Ortberg on the theme of "soul-fatigue"
* This song, by Aaron Keyes and Stuart Townend, "Psalm 62"
* This article has some practical suggestions, by the Girltalk ladies