I used to be relentlessly driven by perfectionism. Like a wild woman bent on attaining approval, I would tear through the house like a Midwestern tornado, making sure not one thing was out of place, screaming like the winds as I went. I wouldn’t even sit down to eat unless all the mess I had made while preparing a meal was completely cleaned up, neither could anyone else. My insecurities beat like the slave I was to them. I was mercilessly driven to perfectly please. After all, the God of the Universe is perfect and wasn’t interested in keeping slouches on hand, now was He? Huh? Was He? I didn’t think so.
I had no peace, no joy. I wasn’t exactly brimming over, spilling any peace or joy on those around me either. When your cup is dry, it doesn’t overflow. Over the years the Lord has freed me from a lot of my burdens. The yoke I carry has never been so light. I have found deep peace and abiding joy, I am starting to bring it to others. My cup has been filling up. His mercies are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness!
So, here we are now. The other side of the pendulum. I have more freedom in Christ now than I have ever hoped, dreamed or imagined I could. After the shackles fell I wasn’t hounding and driving myself to make others, or a false tyrannical god, pleased with my performance. The irony of it all? Now, I am lazy. I think I have figured out why too.
Part of it is fear. I know what I used to be and I DON’T want to go back. Wouldn’t a routine bring me right back to that awful place? The other part is somehow, my brain has convinced me that since I was so uptight for all those years, I needed to just ‘relax’ and stop putting so much pressure on myself. Wouldn’t a routine set me up to be constantly going and doing? The result is where I’m at today. Caught in the middle.
Oddly enough, I am re-learning self-discipline. I’m trying to find the joys in having a routine without it ruling my life. It’s embarrassing. I’m a grown woman. I can’t go back though, only forward. There are messes. I need to earn my keep. But most of all. I need to do everything as unto the Lord and my family needs me to be the person God created me to be for our family dynamic to work. It blesses them when I choose to be a blessing and do the simplest thing like, pick up after myself to start.
Each morning as I become aware the Lord has blessed me with another day, I choose. As the morning unfolds into afternoon and as afternoon falls into evening and the sun starts to set, all the things I have done are things I have chosen. So are the things that haven’t been done. It’s all a choice. Of course, there is the whole reality of running out of time in a day. But I’m talking about choosing not to do something. I do it every single day.
When I finally put my feet up, reflecting on the day, I need to honestly evaluate my decisions and determine if they were ones that were productive and ones that would have pleased the Lord and benefited my family. I wish I could say ‘yes’ for every day. I can’t. So, I try again, asking the Lord to be the strength in my weakness. All day, every day. He is my portion.