I've been mulling this post over in my head for the past couple of weeks. This Sunday it was brought up at our small group and it was again when I went to our MOMS group at church.
The topic was basically on meeting needs for people whether they just had a baby, are going through a crisis, or just being an authentic community of believers.
The one thing that I have learned along the way is this: I must be intentional on meeting the needs of people around me. I cannot say, "Call me anytime." or "Let me know how I can help." Because if I am really honest, when people say this to me I don't or won't call them. I am not going to call someone who I know lives a busy life (don't we all live busy lives?) and say, "Will you come and clean my bathroom?"
Nope. Not a chance. I will suck it up and clean my own bathroom - even if it takes me a couple of weeks to do it. It is my own sin of pride getting in the way.
I started thinking that if I feel and do these things I am probably not alone.
What I need to start doing and saying is this:
"I have Tuesday night free. I am coming over to your house and I will do whatever you need done. I am bringing my cleaning supplies and you will put me to work."
"I am making you a meal. When would you like me to bring it over, or would you like me to freeze it so you can pull it out any night of the week?"
I know this is a little too straight forward for some people, but this is what has been done to me in the past. I was blessed last fall when a group of women came to my house and did a deep cleaning. It was so wonderful because I was 8 months pregnant and the two boys just had come home and life was hard. They said they were coming and I should make a list of things I wanted cleaned; they didn't give me much of a choice. I would have never asked in a million years for help, but they met a huge need. (of course I could have said, "no" to them and missed out on God's blessing)
I have talked to some of my friends about how I try to live my life at 75% speed. Meaning that I don't want to be running around at 100% because I can not maintain it long term. If I keep it at 75% then I am able to make that meal at the last minute, run an errand for a friend, make a phone call, or when life throws some punches I am not dropping all the spinning plates because I have left margin in my life. (This means I have to say "no" to some really fun and cool things - Can I even say godly things? ...gasp!)
Isn't that what we all long for? Margin....space...breathing space.
Honestly, right now with a new baby and 2 new sons from Ethiopia I am running about 94% just because I have so many little people and they have an enormous amount of physical needs. But this season shall quickly pass and become a distant memory. I am looking forward to finding my new normal 75%. What does that look like? I don't know yet, but I am hoping to find out this summer.
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