Monday, 28 September 2015
When the Washing Up can wait...
I'm a big believer in seasons of life; in the idea that there are stages of life where things adapt and change, when things look a bit different... there have been seasons where the middle of the day has been wiped out by nap time, there have been seasons where I've not been able to go away for weekends, or even days, due to feeding babies, and there are seasons where even getting out of my pyjamas, or having a shower has been an event requiring a plan of military precision.
But I'm also conscious that all too often I have used these "seasons" as an excuse.
Anyone who reads my blog regularly will know I'm a christian. Not in the sense of a church-going, good-deed-doer, socks and sandals type (although I do try and do those things - excepting the socks and sandals!), but in the sense that I am able to have a living, real, genuine relationship with Jesus Christ. Not because I'm super special, or holy, or particularly good, but purely because I realised quite a few years ago that without him I am utterly lost (you can read more about that here...)
But like any relationship, that takes work.
In this particular season, the newborn season, its easy to go days, weeks, or even longer without investing in that relationship... without spending time with God. That may sound weird and spiritualistic, but its genuinely not. Spending daily time with God involves reading His words (the Bible), talking to Him (praying), sharing my heart, my worries, my hopes and cares...
When I picked up my Bible last week, I realised it had been a very long time since I had sat down and spent time in the quiet: just reading, pondering, reflecting, journalling.
I had had excuses... three children 3 and under, a newborn, up in the night, waking early, no space during the day to stop without a small person around me until 7.30pm, then the busyness of housework and get-togethers. If anyone could claim to have an excuse, then surely me?
But as I thought about it, I realised that it wasn't true to say I have had no space in my day... my Instagram and Facebook will account for that. My blog, the outcome of hours of work writing and taking photographs, tells the story that there is space in my day for what I prioritise.
Somewhere along the line, time with God had dropped down the priority list.
So on Thursday, when Ava had gone off to school, my Mum had taken Heidi out for the morning, and I had put Jonas down for his nap, I sat down at the kitchen table and breathed. Space. Real space.
Across in the kitchen sink was a pile of dishes, soaking in hot bubbly suds and calling to be washed. In the lounge, a Disney Princess puzzle lay half-strewn across the floor. Upstairs in the wash basket was a load of clothes ready for a trip to the washing machine. I readied myself for action, and then I paused.
As a Mum of three youngsters, the work is never done... there will always be more to do...
I had the opportunity here and now... in this space to let the dishes soak a little longer, the puzzle stay out until little hands returned to play with it again, and a load of washing that wouldn't be harmed by waiting 20 minutes...
And so I got up, pulled out my Bible and read. And prayed. And spent time doing what I always love to do, never regret doing, and yet so often put off...
And I realised... whatever the season... the washing up can wait.