All or Nothing

All or Nothing and I’m not talking about Jesus.  Now it would be super spiritual of me if I used this little blog of my excess thoughts to challenge you to live an “all or nothing” life in Christ.  But that is not where I’m headed.  How many times do you sweep and vacuum a week? Super spiritual questions right!

Well, this is my problem.  I sweep and vacuum almost daily.  Sometimes, I’ll go a day in between sweeping the hardwood floors and vacuuming the front room but for the most part it has become a daily activity.  Now granted, I have 2 dogs, 2 kids and 2 head of very long hair….which in and of itself explains the NEED to sweep and vacuum.  Let me put it this way, if I saved up all the hair that I swept up on a daily basis, I’d have enough to double knit a California King  comforter in about 3-6 months.  However, the sweeping and vacuuming is actually part of a completely different issue, unrelated to hairballs.

I’m an all or nothing girl.  Have I shared this before?  It seems eerily familiar.  Maybe because its my daily battle but I’m learning to come to terms with this issue and my margins are extending and life is actually becoming more enjoyable. However, it’s a battle and by battle I mean one of epic proportions!  I am either completely obsessive about something or completely detached.   Seriously, either the WHOLE house needs to be clean at one time or why bother cleaning up a thing.  I should either train at the gym for a triathlon or sit on my couch eating chocolate.  I either tithe 10% of my income or don’t give anything. Save $1,000 a month or blow it all!  This may have just put me into the crazy woman category and actually those statements are not completely true.  I do just clean portions of my house.  I will go work out just to burn enough calories to eat the chocolate.  I give, even in the times of poverty and I save way less then $1,000/month….but the feeling that when doing less the ALL perhaps means I should just do nothing, continues to nag at me.  Am I just speaking out an issue that only plagues me or do you have some hang-ups in areas like this as well?.

As I was furiously cleaning my bathroom and beating myself up for not being driven to bleach my entire house from top to bottom, I began to think what the root of all this was about.  I swept and vacuumed last night, changed the kids sheets, the kitchen was spotless and my room was looking pretty darn good.  I’m debt free, I saved money last month and worked out a handful of times this week. Why not leave well enough alone and be content right where I was?  Why did I feel “less-than” because everything wasn’t all done at one time?

After all, isn’t it Christ-like to be an ALL type of person in every area of life?  Go hard or go home, right!  Didn’t Jesus say unless you sell everything, forsake your whole family, etc…you won’t enter the Kingdom of heaven?  Sure those were said, but it also says cast your burdens upon Jesus.  The battle is the Lords.  Yes, all these things are true and really it comes down to balance.  One thing I have decided to not be balanced on is weighing every thought and choice and part of my life with the Word of God.  Here is what I found to bring me to a place of peace for today in this tug of war between ALL or Nothing.

 

Whether we are high above the sky or in the deepest ocean, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Romans 8:39

That is one “nothing” I’ll be content to live in…nothing separating me from the love of GOD.  Not un-vacuumed carpets, not less then 10% giving, not even a flabby belly.  Nope, no separation here.  Praising God for the balance of His Love.

 

Cure for impatience

Frederick Buechner, theologian, Presbyterian Minister, and author. He put into words what God has been working in me.  Today is the day to be lived.  Impatience about what is yet to come is frittering away the moments that are most important.  The here and now.  So take these words written years ago as a pledge that impatience has been abandoned and patience has come.  Love is patient and love lives in the precious moments of today!

 

“Today is the point to which all your yesterdays have been leading since the hour of your birth.

It is the point from which all your tomorrows will proceed until the hour of your death. If you were aware of how precious today is, you could hardly live through it.

Unless you are aware of how precious it is, you can hardly be said to be living at all."

Impatience

impatience [ɪmˈpeɪʃəns]

n

1. lack of patience; intolerance of or irritability with anything that impedes or delays

2. restless desire for change and excitement

3. a dislike of anything that causes delay

 

I prefer to label my lack of patience in various things in life as definition #3…a dislike of anything that causes delay.  I just dislike it, not that I’m bratty over it or restless or intolerant.  I just don’t care for waiting.  As I looked into what Love is all about and got stuck on ‘Love is Patient’, I felt it necessary to look a little bit into what impatience is all about.  What if I have a chronic problem where there is no hope for deliverance?  Can I actually LOVE if I have an inkling of impatience?  Thankfully, all things are possible with Christ Jesus, and I am not a lost cause and neither are you!  God is building patience in me as we speak.

Growing patience in your own life can come greatly in understanding the patience GOD has for you.  2 Peter 2:9 says “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”  The Message version says “God isn’t late with his promise as some measure lateness. He is restraining himself on account of you, holding back the End because he doesn’t want anyone lost. He’s giving everyone space and time to change.”

So, In short, God is not sending Jesus back on account of our own slowness in coming to repentance.  Thank goodness that God is willing to wait and restrain Himself.  There is much work left to be done in my heart and there are those in my family and community that have  yet to even know Christ as their savior.  God knows we needed a savior.  That’s why He sent His son.  To reconcile our sin and bring us back to Himself.  Now, if I was God and I had sent a savior to the world, I would want all to repent and turn and get on with their sanctification, that I could send the new heaven and the new Earth.  Pretty sure I’d get impatient in waiting for the people!  Thank you God for being patient, I will take heed of your example and patience will grow.

Next up?  Kind…Love is Kind.