About the Author

Angie is the proud wife of Todd Smith of Selah, and the blessed mommy to Abby, Ellie, Kate, Charlotte, and Audrey Caroline, who passed away the day she was born, April 7th, 2008. Angie was inspired to write Audrey's story, and began the blog www.audreycaroline.blogspot.com in honor of her. You...

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  1. I love you. You’re like a red headed, shorter, American version of me. But I bet you use your Sunday voice ore often than I do.
    I loved this Ange. I read it out to Adam. He loved it. We don’t have any tips though… we suck at it. Looking forward to hearing others tips 🙂

  2. Actually, that’s not entirely true… Adam and I always have a date night on Wednesdays, regardless. We need to take time out and be just Adam and Jenny, not Adam and Jenny and The Multitude. Our marriage matters. After nearly losing it, we are so grateful to the Lord for restoring us, and we take care to make sure we keep it in line with what He asks of us. (on Wednesdays, at least *grin*)

  3. Holy smokes, I need some good advice on this, too! I am perpetually cramming way more into my day than I have time for! And I am SO guilty of using my very unSunday voice at my kids when the stress gets to me. I am such a work in progress!
    I do, however, keep my morning quiet time with Jesus pretty regularly. My whole day just goes so much smoother when I focus my early morning time and energy on Him first. I shutter to think what it would be like if I didn’t fill my cup with Him first thing! Eeek!

  4. Oh, Angie, you’re better than a cup of coffee to get me going in the morning – there is so much of me in your post that I couldn’t help laughing out loud! As I read your bathtub story I saw myself last week, fussing because the power was out & I couldn’t attack several computer related tasks, clean out the ‘fridge etc etc so I decided to catch up on a chapter of a parenting book I was working my way through called “Back to Basics” by Brook Noel. The irony was that the chapter I was reading was about how to slow down and focus on what’s important – your family & your inner self – and yet, like you, while I was reading I was constantly checking to see if the power had come back on, walking around picking up & cleaning, preparing kits for after school activities – rushing, rushing, rushing. All necessary tasks, of course, but none that couldn’t have waited the 15 minutes it would have taken to just be still & absorb the advice in the book. I too wish I had great advice, but probably like me at your age & stage of life, you wouldn’t listen anyhow – our excuse mechanisms are strong & well loaded. In His own way, however, the Lord provides as always – as I near my first 1/2 century with 3 still fairly young children in the house, I’ve noticed that as I age my energy level is nothing like it was & that certain things don’t matter as much any more (like taking on taks that “prove” me in some way or benefit others, but take a toll on my family). I’m still busy & always on the run, probably more than I should be, but my focus has shifted & that’s what makes the difference. An old sage once told me (when talking about my time with God) – “make the time to take the time” – after all, you do for everything else. Be blessed on your quest. I can’t wait to see some helpful hints from others.

  5. Your article is so true! A few tips I have learned…..say no! We can’t do it all…there are many good things but pray about those things God wants us to be doing. Ask your husband too, he is a good judge if you have too much on your plate!
    Stay home!!! Yes, crazy right? Just stay home! We have 7 children ages 16 to 3 and if they each did one extra thing we would be running every day…it’s good to just stay home! We homeschool, so that makes it easier to stay home! When I am home things are smoother, things get done, we are not rushing and trampling on each other….
    So I think those are my best tips…I’m looking forward to reading some more…
    Blessings Alisa

  6. Love this. For me to slow down I had to get sick. Chronic illness will quickly slow you down and make you figure out what is important. I still go do not doubt that, but I go much slower and much more deliberately. I walk much closer to the Lord so I can lean on Him when I need too.

  7. We are in Florida this week on vacation. Day one arriving at our rented beach front house I found myself hurried, frustrated and just generally ticked off. Until, I looked out the window and saw my husband with our baby girl running in the surf. For the first time in her life.
    What was I doing unpacking and surveying the available kitchen pots, pans and utensils and making a grocery list when I could be running on the beach with my babies? SLOW DOWN! What’s the rush? How many things do we miss because we are in a hurry? I commit to be on “island time” and continue this act when I return to the hustle of Northern Virginia.
    More importantly, how many of God’s words and blessings do I completely miss out on by being in a hurry? Ouch.
    Thanks Ang!

  8. I’m no expert, and a fairly new mom with a 3yo and a 1yo. But I’ve been pausing three times a day (during breakfast, at nap, and at bed) to jot praises and thanksgivings in my gratitude journal. Quick one liners- help me pay attention to God’s smile on my day- and help me breathe even if it’s only a minute. It is a great joy booster- and you can’t be rushing if you want to see His tiny multitude of blessings!

  9. I believe wholeheartedly that we bring 90% of the busyness we live into our own lives…there is a meal that society continues to feed us and that is…that in order to accomplish or to be worthy we must do…I have pushed that plate away for over 20 years now. I believe the plate is served by the hand of satan who adds the sugar so that it tastes sweet at first and creates the fat later. Also, the packaging looks pretty from the outside…at first glance which causes us to buy.

  10. Oh, Angie! I laughed at your Sunday voice. I think we all have one of those! I find that building certain “slow down” points into my day and evening helps. I get up an hour before the kids for my quiet time. I build at least an hour into my day to do whatever it is I want (read, write, relax), and after all the kids are tucked in at night, I’m off duty. I don’t do any housework, etc after 9pm. This isn’t to say that I don’t struggle with the constant desire to rush and accomplish, but I’ve found that if I guard those down times I am a better mom and wife. The negative side is that I just don’t get as much done as other people, but I’m learning to be comfortable with that.

  11. It’s sadly ironic that not less than 2 minutes before I read your post this morning, I was scolding my eldest that he needed to hurry up and get his shoes on or he’d be late for school (and it was most definitely NOT in my Sunday voice!)
    With four boys who are interested in a variety of activities, the best lesson I’ve learned is that we as a family have to limit the things we participate in. Yes, we’d like to play every sport, participate in every church activity, volunteer at every school event, work on every committee that asks, etc…. But it’s more important for us to be discerning and really focus in on those things that God is calling us to do (even if it means saying “no” to the very worthy cause!) Often, God is calling us to slow down and spend more time with each other in celebration of Him, and our family is happiest when we heed that call.

  12. I think that the key to slowing down is that you have to be single minded about the thing you are doing. We as moms and business women and wives are major multitaskers. There’s a time for multitasking and then there’s a time when we need to focus specifically on the task at hand. We tend to stop in the middle and switch gears to do another task then switch gears again to finish the original task (with any number of switching in between). This not only exhausts us but it’s counter productive. If you want to learn how to slow down, then try for a week, taking a few items that you do on a regular basis, and just focusing on that item without multitasking. I think that you will find that you have accomplished more and you wont feel like your life is so hectic.
    Thanks for the great reminder to slow down!

  13. Hi Angie,
    It felt like you were speaking directly to me! I struggle with rushing every day! And when I have a few minutes of quiet, I have to force myself to read – I always feel like I’m wasting time! I believe for me the best way to slow down is starting with a quiet time with God. Next, I try to plan out my days to make good use of my time – but not overload! Which is easier said than done! Either way, I struggle with it also all of the time. Thank you so much for your wonderful, candid article that has encouraged and inspired me today! Theresa K.

  14. I was laughing as I read this. Here I sit with three internet windows open a stack of school papers waiting to be put into a spreadsheet, the home phone by my side with it’s mate the cell phone. I’m writing a “to-do-this-week” list and downing my second cup of strong coffee… gee maybe I need to slow down! Thank you for the reminder!
    Oh and on our granite I use really warm water and microfiber clothes, it works wonders. I buy the clothes in the automotive section of Target and they are little miracle workers on granite, marble and stainless!

  15. Wow! This was so encouraging! I by no means have this down, but there are a few things that I try to think about before committing to something. The first are my priorities: my relationship with God comes first, then my family, then anything else. Looking at it this way helps me evaluate if any given activity is going to help or hinder what I feel the Lord has given to me in this stage of life.

  16. This is so true and important to remember. Especially because God often talks to us in that still small voice and we are much less likely to hear it if we are surrounded by busyness and “hurry”. Beautiful post =)

  17. During the time that FigNewTon was sick and I was faced with losing her, I realized that the every day moments, those were life. Everything else wouldn’t matter in the end. So I made a choice to live in those moments. I figured out what my main objective in life was (to love my girls and teach them to love God) and anything that didn’t help me fulfill it was eliminated. I still have to make that choice daily. The little things that fill our days are our lives. We just have to choose how to spend them.

  18. So sad, but true! It’s the American way! We can so caught up in being busy and trying to be busier that so and so, so we can look more important! A year ago, we were really busy. Football. Guitar. Wed. night church. Tests. Homework. and that was just the kids. My wake up call was my sons report card that had a “D” on it! That’s a whole other story. But it jolted me and it rocked my world! And to this day, it’s a lesson learned. I have to be involved and alert to what is going on in the lives of my kids. I don’t want them to have my leftovers!
    As of this school year. We are home every single night! No sports! No guitar lessons (due to cost)! I work at the boys school during the day. I am available all night long to them. We hang out. Talk. Enjoy each other. MEAP testing is going on, so we haven’t had the load of homework yet either.
    I am involved in steering for my church women’s ministry. I enjoy that. I am maxed out and won’t take on anything else! I am spear heading this years craft fair at the church. That’s a lot of work as well. I know I am at my limit right now. But I’m not on overload because over the past year, I have no problem saying no! I have set boundaries and I stick to them!
    I can’t do it all. But what I choose to do, I want to give it my all. That all includes my kids!

  19. Great stuff. Thank you!
    I am very much the same way and definitely have not found all the answers.
    But one thing I have done is forced an hour into my crazy schedule every day for nothing but quiet time with Jesus. Listening, Praying, Reading.
    When someone first suggested it to me, I thought there was no way it was possible. After a couple of years of failed attempts, I am finally doing it on a somewhat consistent basis now. At least 4 times a week every week, not great, but better than my old once every couple of weeks.
    The key for me was finding the right time and then making it a true priority. My right time meant me waking up at 5:30 instead of 7. And I am not a morning person. But, the more I do it, the more I love it and need it and depend on that time. My relationship with my Lord is becoming more intimate every day and I hear from Him every single time. I’m just now starting to understand what dependency really looks like as I use this time to come to the Him for everything. If I don’t have this time I long for it and can feel it physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
    This time also allows me to get things into perspective and that is a huge help for not being in a hurry all the time, something I have always struggled with. It brings focus to my life and I realize what is worth my time and energy and what is not. And this perspective has allowed me to really simplify my hearts desire to just love and serve Jesus.

  20. God is showing me more and more that eliminating hurry in a culture that is fast-paced, consumer driven, and dog-eat-dog is going to have to be radical. This year, God led me to quit my job (in ministry), pull my four children from public school (we now home school), and SLOW DOWN. I fought hard against it but finally obeyed. It has been the best thing that ever happened to our family. For the very first time, we are not over-scheduled. It feels as though our days are longer and there IS enough time in the day to get it all done!
    I realize that God is not calling everyone to do this (and am in no way suggesting that He is)! My point is, eliminating hurry is often costly. But the rewards are a thousand fold!

  21. Buy a hot tub. Seriously. And then use it. Every night. WITH your husband! And NOT with the kids. We bought one well over 10 years ago – used – with a tax refund (we didn’t spend over $1500), and it’s the best thing we ever did. My husband & I are militant about getting into the hot tub every night just for our quality time. He has a cigar; I have a glass of wine or cognac, and we talk. For an hour, this is our time to re-connect.
    It’s not always easy with kids in the house, but ours are older now & they really respect our space about this (plus the fact that their eyeballs would totally burn out if they saw us naked!)
    When they were younger, we still could manage it – we’d put them to bed & then head out. In a way, it was easier, because bedtime was earlier. And we kept a monitor close by, just to, well, monitor!
    It’s worth every penny we’ve spent on it – try it.

  22. My 2 year old is teaching me to slow down and enjoy the moment. I’m a slow learner but I think I’m starting to get it…something about hearing her tell her baby doll “Mommy said hurry!” just gets me every time.

  23. I love being encouraged by (in)courage. I was just getting down on myself because my house is messy, dirty dishes are in the sink, I need to vaccuum, and I don’t even have kids. Angie, I love that you are so REAL! I think that sometimes I put these intelligent women “bloggers” on a “look how perfect her life is” pedestal. For the record, I know you don’t put yourself up there. But it’s such a good reminder that you’re just like me! And I’m like you!
    We’re crazy, busy, beautiful women! Woo hoo!

  24. Dear ones who Run this blog:
    Might you consider adding a ‘respond to’ feature for each comment? It would help make this format more interactive. I’d love to ‘reply’ to a comment (Jiggy: ‘you described me!’ or, “Jiggy, as a ‘sister in the chronic illness’ journey, I stopped and prayed for you just now’)
    grateful for HIS grip, HveHope

  25. Angie! Your post had me in giggles in quite a few spots. I so can relate. Just yesterday we were having our family photos and instead of enjoying the opportunity to just capture my beautiful family on film…I was rushing my poor husband, thinking about how we were going to get them changed into their picture perfect clothes without making them look like they rolled out of bed all the while changing into my jeans in the CAR!
    I am a mess I tell you.
    I should probably read that book too. I often have a huge problem with slowing down. I don’t know how to do it. I think it is a woman thing. And I also married a procrastinator. Our marriage is very interesting. LOL! Thanks for this Angie!

  26. Angie:
    God bless you, you have too much on your plate!
    But don’t worry….God will slow you down eventually. I was just like you, a teacher, single parent, and college student all at the same time. Then God put me out of commission. I got very sick, and had no choice but to quit. I used to say, God got jealous because I wasn’t spending enough time with him. I still laugh about it, even when I fall down, because most of the time I either fall backwards or on my knees, which is where God wants me to be. So I just kneel there until somebody picks me up. I now have Parkinson’s disease and seizure disorder. So I can’t hurry up even if I wanted to. My Nanan (who also had PD) told me @ 50 you want to start taking things off your plate.) Well, God did it for me, since I was too stubborn. And I thank Him every Day.
    I found this prayer that I want to pass on to you….It’s called…”Slow me down, Lord”
    “Ease the pounding of my heart by the quietig of my mind.
    Steady my hurried pace with a vision of the eternal reach of time. Give me, amid the confusion of the day, the calmness of the everlasting hills, Break the tensions of my nerves and muscles with the soothing music of the singing streams that live in my memory.
    Help me to know the magical restoring power of sleep.
    Teach me the art of taking minute vacations—of slowing down to look at a flower, to chat with a friend, to pat a dog, to read a few lines from a good book.
    Slow me down, Lord, and inspire me to send my roots deep into the soil of life’s enduring values that I may grow toward the stars of my greater destiny.”
    Wilferd A. Peterson

  27. I read a great book – Too Busy Not To Pray. And yes, I started to slow down. I realized that ‘hurry’ eliminates so much joy in our lives. Oh, I get my spurts, where I’m running here and there, but I notice the stress, and I settle down again and remember that ‘hurry’ doesn’t make my life better. Wonderful and timely post!

  28. Angie…while I write this you are somewhere in our building speaking at our B&H sales conference…and I’m answering phones wishing I was there! I love the picture you posted with this, if a picture could slow me down, this one did it. Of course, while I am reading this, I’m listening to the radio, taking orders, filing my broken fingernail.

  29. I set aside Saturdays now and then that I stay home and do not plan to get dressed, leave the house, put on a bra or put my contacts in. It may be a creativity day or a day to simply catch up. I make sure there is food in the house and sometimes I even ignore the phone if necessary.

  30. Hurry is the church’s disease, how can you listen if you’re rushing? How can you build real, honest relationships if you never sit down and share your heart? I can completely relate and slowing down is sooo counter-cultural. Even at my job I’m considered to be slacking if I dare ‘single-task’ instead of having 5 things going on at once.
    Ann Voskamp has been so encouraging in all of this and she recommends this book that I want to read even though I don’t have kiddos!
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1434768880?ie=UTF8&tag=holyexper-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=1434768880
    Wishing you the best as we all learn how to “be still”.

  31. I love that you said “It’s not usually in my Sunday voice.” I can relate and that statement speaks volumes about the separation of our public face and private face. My son has now starting saying “NOW!” because he hears me say it so much! UGH!

  32. Dearest Angie,
    I am right with you in feeling exhausted and overwhelmed with life and all that it requires of me. Recently I did a major inventory both physically and spiritually took a break from the computer/blog and spent some serious time in prayer. The results of my little time out surprised me. God was very direct with letting me know what activities I was to keep and what I was to let go of. It was so difficult for me. I love to be with people and am very social. However with the care of my severely disabled daughter taking more and more of my energy I just could not keep up with things as well anymore.
    God was pulling me home once again. It has been a month since I slowed my life down considerably and now I have begun to cull through my home, de-cluttering and re-organizing. It’s time to let go of things that are blocking my path to God. It has been so difficult. However God is faithful to those who love Him.
    And oh, how I love Him! He is stretching me to trust more and give more each day to Him and to my family. My daughters time with us is very precious and limited. The more time I am out running around trying to fill myself is time I will regret not spending with her when the day comes for her to be with Jesus.
    My husband has benefitted from my calmer and more attentive spirit AND the laundry is clean, folded and put away! So I would encourage you to take it to prayer and have your husband and friends join you. God’s direction will be clear. Of that I have no doubt. I will be praying for you and the answers you seek.
    Blessings and Grace My friend…

  33. Well, I’m currently in nursing school. So I feel rushed ALL the time. But I be sure and give time to myself- even if it just means getting off campus and going home for the weekend (which I will soon be doing!). This keeps my mind off of the work i need to be doing and just REST. It’s a much needed break from the hustle bustle of nursing school!

  34. As I was sitting on the couch doing NOTHING but hold my new baby daughter, I thought this same thing. Then I read your beautiful words. Charlotte has made me realize how to reprioritize. Oh by the way…Charlotte arrived beautifully Friday. She is a peaceful child of God.

  35. While my husband and I are learning our way into this aspect of time with the lord we have started shutting off the phones., computers, and TV while our daughter is awake in the evening. We spend that time focusing on her and on each other, once she goes to bed we enjoy a meal together and talk about our days, about us, and just enjoy the quiet that you so rarely get with a 9 month old in the house.
    Whil we are still learning this practice ajust focusing on each other has done wonders for our relationship, and our parenting. We still enjoy our TV shows but we enjoy eachother and our daughter first.

  36. Angie,
    I love your writing and added your (in)courage “button” to my ministry recording studio webpage page (underbrush.net). Keep up the great work!!
    God Bless,
    Jason 🙂

  37. I would love love love to throw my TV out. What a huge time waster that’s become in my life. Only thing is, it’s football season and there’s no way my hubs would agree to that! 🙂 Ahh, maybe someday.

  38. We have been studying the 10 commandments and I have been so convicted by the commandment to keep the Sabbath Holy. Why is it so hard to have a day of rest and relationship – and NOTHING else? I truly believe this was God’s answer to your question though. Hard work isn’t a bad thing. Neither is multi-tasking. I think it gets out of hand when we don’t follow God’s commandment for rest though. I truly believe that if I had this one down, I would have such a better time of getting God’s perspective with how I use my “work” time.

  39. What a wonderful post about slowing down! My husband and I recently looked at our calendar for the rest of the year and we honestly are completely booked through the first of the year with craziness EVERY weekend and through the week. I dont know how we are going to survive, we just need to slow down. When so many things seem important to me, God reminds me through posts like this was it truly important.
    As far as the granite goes though, if you get some good tips please pass them on. My granite drives me nuts and I have never felt like they have been clean in the 3 years we have had them.

  40. Great post! Ever since I had Payton 3 months ago I never feel NOT rushed! I know it takes a toll on my physical and emotional well-being. I start back to work on Monday and I truly worry about my sanity. I needed to read this post!!

  41. What a timely message… we were just talking last week at my MOPS group about how our culture has become so hurried. One of the moms said an older, wiser friend had a great strategy for dealing with it: She completely eliminated the word “hurry” from her vocabulary. No more “Hurry up and get in the car!”, “Hurry, we are late for church!,” etc., etc. Sounds simple and yet oh-so-impossible all in the same thought. Have not implemented this plan in my own life yet, but I will tell you… since then, I have been SO MUCH more aware of how often those words escape my lips. And the toll it takes on my children. And my sanity.
    I think she might be on to something….
    Wishing you peace in the midst of your hurried world…
    ~Jenn

  42. I live my life like a “Vapor.” Instead of hurrying to get to Point A. Point B, worrying about fitting everything in-I realize that today could be my last day, so I choose to take it all in.Moment by Moment-I don’t want to miss a thing.So I stop and take deep breaths. In-and-Out; thanking my Heavenly Father with each exhale.
    (Note: I am not married, so I realize this will get harder once I add a family to the mix.) 🙂

  43. Thanks for posting this, Angie. I am feeling this exact way this week! In fact, just the other day, I sat down with my calendar to decide what really mattered on it. I canceled a lot of things for this coming week. Thanks!

  44. Timely, Angie. I needed this. I believe most moms nowadays struggle with this. I don’t have any wonderful insights. Just wanted to let you know I feel it.
    Oh, and I remember my mom reading Madame Guyon years ago and telling me her story. I’ve some of her books myself now and always come away feeling I’ve learned a great deal about myself and my Lord.
    I’ll be keeping up with the comments to see what great ideas spring up here.

  45. Obviously this is such a struggle for so many of us. I do like the hot tub idea!! My husband and I have trouble making time to connect. We have survived babies, toddlers, tweens, now verging on empty nest. We definately need to slow down and really connect. Thanks for the thoughts and keep them coming.

  46. Oh Angie, I love this and I can so relate. But lately, I’ve been longing for simplicity and quietness. Unfortunately, I have to work and take care of my home and lots of other stuff. I always try to have my quiet time in the morning before I get involved elsewhere. But I find myself even rushing through that and then I wonder why I feel so depressed at times.
    I recently discovered a blog called Holy Experience and it’s written by Ann Voscamp, who is another writer here on (in)courage. I find myself visiting her blog just to be quiet and learn from her. So, if you don’t personally know Ann … you must visit her blog and you will feel like immediately slowing down.
    I love your sense of humor though and can so identify with you.
    Blessings,
    Debbie

  47. Slowing down. Being Still. Solitude. Silence. These themes seem to be everywhere I turn lately. God’s stirring. Up until a year ago I lived the “Hurried” life. Always on the phone. Running errands here and there. Lunches out. Coffee out. Leading worship. Leading small group. Leading outreach ministries. Yes. Yes. and not a lot of No coming out of my mouth. I love this quote by Sue Monk Kidd: “Sometimes, in order to say yes to what matters most, I must say no to good things.”
    So the first thing that shifted things for me was starting to say No.
    Then things naturally moved into an ordering and emptying of the things that matter and the things that do not. A re-prioritizing of my life. Rearranging. I strongly believe that this is impossible without the guiding of the Holy Spirit. It is very difficult to “hear” the Spirit’s leading when we are hurried and frazzled. Purposeful stillness, solitude and quiet need to be incorporated into our lives. This is an intentional posture of the heart. An intentional listening. An intentional seeking.
    I have so much to say about this. Solitude and silence have changed my life. Where I was once a woman who had lost her Joy…I have found it again at the feet of my King in silence.

  48. Jiggy and I are on the same page. “Fiestsy” was written about me in my ELEMENTARY school year book. I have always beena wide-open kind of girl. Even after having 3 girls and being in full time ministry. I could run wide open. I didn’t require much sleep. Then, 4 years ago chronic illness hit. Boy, did I do a 180*. Chronic illness is what it took for me to slow down, reprioritize and learn to live with new standards, new expectations, and my non-perfect s-e-l-f! Also kids CAN live with their clean laundry still in baskets unfolded & unironed. Unmade beds are not a sin or crime. Life is messy, so its ok if the house is too. I am learning to “live in the moment” of each day. And, life is good here.

  49. Angie, I can relate big time. I have no idea how to slow down this train of this crazy fast-paced lifestyle it seems we are all apart of now. I told my mom the other day that a relaxing day where you sit around and do nothing doesn’t just happen, you have to plan it. I think that is backwards to what it used to be, but that’s just how it is… I really enjoyed this honest post.
    xx

  50. I wish I knew how to slow down. I am with you. I am constantly saying go go go or hurry up. It is very aggravating that I am not showing my son to slow down and enjoy life. Thank you for being honest. I look forward to reading through everyone’s comments.

  51. When our children were young we felt it was especially important to have a calm dinner time. It was the one time when we were all together at one time. We set a full table with napkins, silverware, and dishes. Then we lit a few candles. Sometimes we played soft music. It was usually effective although we still had a few nights where someone fell out of their chair or shot milk out of their nose. Something about the flickering candles helped us all calm down.

  52. Oh, my. I can totally relate to this. Well, it is how I used to be…always on the go, always overcommitting, always hurrying my kids along with me. Mostly wishing my kids were older and that they could do more for themselves. How I wish I hadn’t done that. It took my son getting cancer to make me realize that we only have today. We are not guaranteed a tomorrow. Joseph is now with the Lord and you can bet I am grateful for every single minute I had with him and wish so badly I had not hurried through so much of his life. But one wonderful gift I got out of this is that I truly have simplified my life and I consider my main job and priority to be being there for my kids. Once he got sick we pretty much ignored any other obligations/duties we had and committed ourselves to making his few days wonderful. Parenting in itself is a huge job and a ministry and I don’t feel a desire to be doing and going all the time anymore. I don’t want to miss anything in their lives. God gave me a gift out of this tragedy…a contentedness and peace in doing small things and enjoying the today I have. Of course, I have days where I’ve totally planned too much or just cannot move at the glacial pace of a 3 yr. old for one more minute, but on the whole my life is at a much slower speed now, and I am glad. All glory to God and his grace.

  53. I too have a hard time slowing down and constantly rush my children. It is a daily battle.
    As for the granite, try Method’s Daily Granite cleaner and cloth. It works great!!!

  54. I try to implement a Sabbath day in my week where I slow down and do very little-no laundry, no ministry work, no housework, meals are leftovers or convenience foods from the freezer. It is a day for leisure naps, reading for fun books, watching the kids play and not thinking about problems or a to-list. I am not perfect at this and it is constantly evolving but it is a day that I intentionally say no to everything but family and quiet time with God. Kerri Wyatt Kent has written several books, such as Rest, about this very topic – she has some great insight.

  55. Definitely ‘connect’ to this one!! I don’t have the answer(s) yet, but it is something I am intentionally seeking God on currently. I want some love, joy, PEACE not rush, chaos, busyness!!

  56. I just realized that I was rushing to write this comment so I could hurry and clean the kitchen and watch a movie before I fall asleep! this post and my friends post
    http://www.cinnamonrollsandbacon.blogspot.com, have made me really think about what is important in my life and why I am always rushing around, I need to slow down and feel God and experience my children’s lives instead of rushing through it!

  57. Hi Angie,
    I confess, I have a habit of making a trophy out of a long list of THINGS DONE. Sometimes, I rush and cram lots of chores in one day just to have some time off the next day Problem is, it does not work all the time.
    I have 3 alarm clocks to ensure I do not oversleep so that I have a slow start to the day. Spending some time praying before I get out of bed sets the tone.
    Once everyone is out of the house in the late morning, I sit down facing OUT of the house to pray and do my quiet time. Note, I face out so that I do not get distracted (not so easily) by visual reminders around the house of what needs to be done.
    I am the efficient, high energy and organised sort and while those are traits admired and praised , it has become a burden too. I do more and more and get all tired out. Leaving me sometimes with time but not much else… Being efficient helps but managing our hearts and minds, that is the solution. Turning my eyes on Jesus and then looking to the chores and doing my best.
    I consciously seek to lower my expectations of myself, put away self perceived expectations of others and reassess – needs, wants… Lowering standards is not always bad – windows that are not sparkling clean, garden overgrown, life goes on..
    Looking for beauty in things around, looking up to the clouds, they slow me down and help me get things in perspective. I realise again, how small I am, how insignificant the overflowing laundry basket is, etc.

  58. I have one (well, two) words for your granite: vinegar windex. I am a neat freak and with windex in one hand (for the granite and most other surfaces) and a lint roller in the other (for dog hair and other stuff that gets on carpet), I am content in my neat freakness.
    I did like your post. I think often about how much running around I do (not nearly as much though as alot of people) and it is nice to sit back and “Smell the Roses” as often as I can. Roses being listening to my children’s laugh and joining in, playing Crazy 8’s and Go Fsh and sitting down and actually listening when the question “How was your day at school?” is asked.
    Oh, and I am in awe of your faith.

  59. oh wow this is so what I needed to hear…for me slowing down involves balance..no balance well it is not pretty. I find my evening tea time is very important. Preparing tea is not something easily hurried. It forces me to slow down. God is certainly forcing me to look at this issue and I am still at stage one and I am in mid forties and thinking when will I ever learn this.thanks for great post.

  60. I have enjoyed your blog off and on for the past two and half months since my angel son died. I am such a hurry hurry person. When my 2 1/2 first words were go go go I knew I needed to improve. I have tried to find moments daily to connect to each child and to my husband. Fridays are our date nights and Mondays are the whole families night and then beyond that I attempt a few minutes with each one. My motivation was realizing my 11 year old was going to be leaving my home in a shorter amount of time than she had been with me and that saddened me. Have I taught her about Christ? Have I showed her how to help others? Have I helped her be proud of her status as a daughter of God. Etc… Etc… Thanks for your blog. You have inspired me and helped me. Kappy

  61. I need all the advice on this I can get! I definitely fall into the hurried state of mind and being all too easily. When I really focus though, I am most at peace (and probably nicer to be around) when I do two things: 1) Spend time with God in the morning. All alone. No kids, no husband, no work, just me and God. 2) When given a choice about how to spend my time, remember to ask myself “Is what I’m choosing really that important?” In that moment and in a big picture sense.
    I often find myself cleaning the kitchen or doing laundry or checking my work email when my daughter is calling me to come play with her. There should be no choice there. Granted work is important, but more often than not my work email doesn’t have to be checked right then. The laundry can wait. I have to remember that my memories of growing up have nothing to do with a clean house or how my parents did at their jobs.
    Like I said, this is a lesson I want to learn so much more quickly and easily than it is coming in reality. I wish I could these two things (together, on the same day preferably) more often than I do.

  62. Wonderful, that bathtub image is me to a T! I have a ring that says “Breathe” and every time I catch site of it I take a deep breath and set my focus to Jesus. I have found it so helpful even on stressful days to just have 5 seconds of peace!

  63. Sounds like you need a week on “the island”. PEI has a way of slowing us down and reminding us to… breathe. Breathe in, breathe out, repeat. Worshiping God with each breath.
    Thank you for this post… so timely, to wise, so much truth. I needed to hear this message today.
    I think it’s very important for us women to realize that we’re not alone. So often, we think that other women that we look up to (uhm, that’d be you), are “together”, “perfect”, and we tend to forget that they, too, are moms, wives, employees, who have to juggle everything like we do, and who struggle with trying to “do everything”. It hurts to know that you’re struggling with these issues too, but it makes me love you that much more… because I can relate to it so much.

  64. i have been where you are and have no desire to return. i think it was after my mom died very suddenly of a bacterial infection in her lungs, she was 57, that i began asking myself … what truly matters? does my house being spotless really make a difference in the world? or is it more important that I spent those last couple of high school years spending every minute possible with my two daughters before they moved away. I learned to not over obligate myself by not over committing simply because i had always been the “go to” mom. i simply learned how to politely say no, I don’t have time to committ 100% to that. i learned to get up earlier (I put my bible on top of my alarm clock) in order to start my day the correct way. If i planned devotions later, i always got sidetracked. I find smaller but beneficial projects to be involved in so that no one gets my left overs. Of course I realize this may be easier for me to do since the girls are grown. but I can tell you, my life has far less stress these days. I find that truly surrendering my time to God allows me to make the decisions i need to make.

  65. I was thinking the same thoughts recently, and this post has really made it sink in. I need to slow down, and be more present for my family, on a more relaxed level.
    I found granite countertop wipes at Target in the cleaning section (they also have a leather version, electronics version, etc). They really seem to do the trick and I no longer feel the crumbs or the rough bumps. They say you need to use a ph balanced cleaner on granite or limestone, so these meet that requirement. Hope that helps!
    Looks like I had more to say about countertops than working on myself. One day at a time. 🙂

  66. Wow, God is screaming this message to me from ALL angles. I have heard him for 6 months on this but he is CONFIRMING my thoughts. Thank you for sharing this. It is one more reminder. Time to reevaluate. Can’t wait to hear how it works out 🙂

  67. So funny that I am up two hours past bedtime because I just can’t get it together today. Maybe I should get off the computer and go to bed! Seriously. Sometimes I daydream about moving to another country where life isn’t so complicated. As far as advice about slowing down, I guess it would be to not to get involved in so many things in the first place. I am notorious for realizing I’m too involved when it seems too late to back out. My husband and I also try to be very scheduled with our routines with the kids. It can be monotonous, but it helps us get things accomplished. But there is always a mountain of laundry in the bedroom. I think that modern homes should have a dressing room/laundry room where everyone in the entire family can wash store their clothes. In baskets. I mean, we live out of those anyway. By the way, I love your new profile picture on your blog. You look amazing!!

  68. We unplugged our TV a year ago. Don’t miss it at all. I took a job with the same company my husband works for, and we moved to having just one vehicle. Every Friday night is date night, and we will not let that slip even for a week. We have a rule that we spend a minimum of one hour with God each day. Not always easy, and have had to give ip other good things. Worth it, though.

  69. I have a chronic illness so I was forced to slow (way) down. I didn’t have to make that decision, it was made for me.
    I now think that a lot of people are busy because they want to feel irreplaceable, or worthy or important. Not saying that’s the case with you, sweet Angie, just mentioning what I see around me.
    Just try to find out WHY you are so busy.
    It has been humbling for me to not be able to be busy anymore. No more grand things/activities/filled agenda’s I can speak of.
    Now, when people ask me how it is going, I can’t talk about all the things I’m doing, no, I have to talk about how I am doing. I used to used the business as a ‘buffer’; I could just talk about ‘things’ instead of me.
    It’s a constant battle to not feel useless or unworthy. I have to constantly pray to be ‘dead’ to the world opinion and only be receptive towards God’s opinion of me.
    All that is left is my relationship with the Lord.
    And, as as Oswald Chambers always says, that IS to be our ONLY worry: our relationship with the Lord.

  70. I love this post! I am director of women’s ministry at my church and for some (insane) reason I volunteered to teach reading 3 mornings a week at my son’s school. God took the time to slow me down by allowing a series of virus’ to attack my home. I realized that I had too many plates in the air and let the volunteer job at the school go. I love teaching reading, and it is very valuable, but I can not do it in a season where I am even more committed to raising 3 young children and serving the Lord in a ministry I know he has given me. In the week since I stopped the school position I have baked for my family, loved on my children and husband, and gotten more accomplished in my home than I ever imagined possible (even with another bout of strep throat in my 5 year old). I have yet to have that crazy frazzled feeling which I feel comes from doing what WE think is important, not what God says is important.
    Blessings to you!

  71. I struggle with this alot. But I have found that I am getting better when I ask myself when I am in the middle of the tornado, is this going to be THAT important at the end of the day?
    One day, I was in this chaotic state, I found myself hurrying the kids to get out the door (to go to an event that I didn’t even want to be at, but committed to…..another lesson learned about saying “no” sometime…..)
    anyway, I was frantically tying my son’s shoes, getting all flustered and looked up and saw his face with his forehead cringing, eyes scowling and his nose scrunched up. He looked like he was frightened. I asked him what was wrong and he said he was making the same face as me. nice, huh?
    I was so ashamed with my behavior. It made me realize that I needed to slow down and focus on what is truly important. Even though I was heading out to help others……it reminded me of this saying that my husband often quotes: “what good is being the best when it brings out the worst in you?”
    Great post, Angie…..you are always a breath of fresh air.
    xox
    *~Michelle~*

  72. Well, first of all..bless your heart! I’d say don’t be too too hard on yourself. You are in a phase of life (yes, mothers have them too) where life is more busy than quiet. That being said though, I’m sure you get many requests for a huge variety of things on top of your home and child responsibilities and many of these requests are things you genuinely are interested in supporting/helping/participating in. Prepare a response in your head now…I learned to say something like, “that is so exciting/interesting/fantastic but, right now I am not taking on any new committments/not adding anything else to my calendar/blah blah/blah…whatever works for you…but have that answer at the ready so you are not tempted to say yes to something that may indeed be amazing but will add more stress and complication to your already stressful and complicated life. One day in the not too distant future your children will be all grown up and you will have an empty calendar page or two to fill….there are seasons.
    Also, for your granite…give this a try-it makes it so shiny and like brand new:
    It comes in a while plastic bottle and I do not have any ties to the product or company…it’s just something we’ve used that has been good : )
    Regent Stone Products
    Silicone Impregnator (1 qt bottle):
    1-800-624-8210
    Blessings to you today…Joyce

  73. Oh Angie. After reading your words about “hurrying the kids in your unSunday voice”, I stopped to think…why do I tend to hurry up my 6 year old to get out of the car or hurry this or hurry that? I can’t even remember what the reasons were, but what breaks my heart is that I KNOW my son remembers that I used my unSunday voice in speaking with him. Thank you for your words and for being so transparent with us. It helps knowing that we are not alone on this journey of motherhood! Many blessings to you!

  74. The other day, I was on my commute home. I commute one hour–each way–and break up that commute by taking the bus (parking downtown is expensive and a nightmare).
    As we started out of downtown, our bus driver noticed something wasn’t right. As we started onto the expressway, he lost power stearing on the bus.
    Can you imagine, driving down a major expressway, in the heart of rush hour–people blowing their horns, frustrated because it’s taking 2 extra minutes to get from A to B, and now a big charter bus (yes, our bus is like a Greyhound bus. It’s nice!) is driving along with no power stearing and a bus full of people who are just as anxious as those in the cars next to us?
    We had to pull over (in an elementary school parking lot, thank goodness), wait for the tow truck and a replacement bus to pick us up.
    My life is scheduled–and I don’t even have kids! I want to get to that bus stop at 5:01, to be in my car and on the way home for my 30 minute drive to be home at approx. 5:35 so I can start dinner and relax.
    Bus breakdowns aren’t part of the plan.
    But as I was sitting there, I thought, “So what”.
    So what if I don’t get home at 5:35 (It was 6:20 when I walked in the door).
    So what if I don’t have dinner cleaned up and my lunch packed before Monday night TV starts.
    So what if I can’t get online to check my e-mail (for the 756th time that day)
    So what if I am later making a phone call about some volunteer work.
    So what.
    My tip: Sometimes you just have to let go.
    It’s hard. We don’t want too. We’re scheduled. We’re creatures of habit. But really? My world didn’t end. I got home safely and it’s OK.
    Great post Angie!

  75. Hi Angie!!
    I had begun reading your blog a few weeks ago and instantly felt connected to you because I struggle with all of the same issues you do…I think we all do!! This is my first visit to in courage, but this really hits home. About 6 months ago my husband had a “put the foot down” conversation with me about exactly this. I was a sorta kinda Realtor in a market that had just fallen off a cliff, president of my girls’ PTO, room mother, school board member, facebook addict, and texting junkie! Not to mention blog-a-maniac which I don’t count :).
    We were living our life on the bus of insanity and chaos and it was just time to GET OFF!! Hold up, put on the brakes, open the door, and LET ME OUTTA HERE!
    Because our culture makes all of this technology so “normal” I don’t think we realize what it does to our families. I also don’t think it is any secret that satan knows how to cause a family to crumble and he is doing just.
    So…anyway, sorry to ramble…my husband called our cell phone company, cancelled text messaging…PERIOD…I cannot receive one nor send one. YIKES…talk about withdrawal!! He unplugged our computer, cancelled our internet, dared me to get back on facebook (because I mean really, why was I sitting there staring at a screen waiting for somebody I had nothing in common with to give me a play by play of their very ordinary life…seriously??). Then he challenged me to not watch tv or talk on the phone for a week. Not even to him when he was at work. (he is a shift worker so it was taking time away from our kids that I would talk to him on the phone all night when he was working). WOW! What a difference this made. I found that just like any other addiction, once you don’t have it for a while, you really don’t need it, and while we did buy a new computer (ours was shot so now I am sporting a MAC…YAY) I have lost that desire to be so all up in the world and in everyone’s useless business.
    I still facebook…every few days or so, I blog…every morning before I get my day started, and I do talk on the phone…when someone calls my house (wow it must be really important) because I turn my cell phone off unless I leave. It is amazing how many people now FB me to communicate because I don’t have texting and they don’t want to take the time to call. I have since “retired” from a real estate career that required me to put my family on the back burner, resigned as a school board member, recruited help with all of my volunteer commitments at school (way too many of those), and have learned to say “NO” when it comes to obligating myself, which I so willingly do without even thinking, giving my family nothing but leftover scraps if they are lucky!!
    I will say that it was hard to separate myself from the technology of this world, but once I turned my eyes upon Jesus and looked into His face (during my quiet time with Him that I now could enjoy again) the things of the earth have grown strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace!!

  76. Another great book about slowing down and simplicity is “Living Simply: A Path to Joy and Freedom,” by Jose Hobday. She’s a Native American Franciscan Sister, who has chosen a vow of poverty. She has some really amazing points about slowing down, owning less, and evaluating all areas of life to simplify.

  77. I did it. I slowed down. It was really hard. I quit my job. We were a two-income household. Now we are down to 1. We had to downsize and make some major adjustments in our lives… but we did it. And I am so grateful. I am just here… when people need me. I have time to stop and talk to strangers and witness. I have time to be there for my loved ones when they need me.
    It is soo hard for type A. The thing i battle the most is just sitting and being still… resting in the down times so I can be “on top of it” in the busy times. Sitting on the couch during the day (sometimes) brings an enormous amount of guilt! I am still working on that… because I know that guilt is not coming from God.

  78. this is exactly where i am at…i’ve been trying to slow down and simplify, yet do it by running around like a mad woman? hmmm…thanks for the honesty and encouragment!!!

  79. Thanks Angie for these words, I don’t know how to begin to slow down, but I think I’d like to. I know my four children would like all of us to. Take care, In God’s Love, sheila

  80. People will always ask us to do more. We have to learn to just…say…no. Decide the activities that are absolutely necessities (make a list, even)…and say no to the rest. Don’t add new activities or obligations without subtracting (but don’t feel you HAVE to add when you subtract!). Even if you feel like you finally have your head above water and can take on more…DON’T! I agree with your original quote: we need downtime. We need unstructured time to just BE. Or even just to BE spontaneous!! Because life always throws more “stuff to do” at you and if you’re already over-booked….well, that’s when we get burned out.
    I have a five-month old and a 4-year-old. I decided I want to enjoy them during this season. I took inventory. I decided that beyond my home caring and regular church attendance, etc., I could 1. teach a class once/week at church 2. attend our home group twice/month 3. play Bunco once/month 4. plan and host a craft day.
    Host a weekly playdate? NO. Greet, serve in the nursery, be on the outreach team at church? NO. Teach a weekday Bible study? NO. Help plan a skit for the women’s Christmas party? NO. And on and on and on.
    And, boy, am I glad because now I’m helping my mom plan her 60th birthday party and planning two other November parties, planning what to make for Christmas gifts, hosting a jewelry party and a housewarming party, etc. etc. etc. Those came up at the last minute…and now, instead of stressing me out, they’ll be FUN. If I’d said yes to all the other stuff–I’d be in waaaay over my head and would have probably missed this entire phase of my boys’ life.
    Leave some space. Room to play. Just say no.

  81. You crack me up, Angie. And like others have said, you are so like me in many ways (and by the way, I TOTALLY hear ya on the granite…ugh!!). I am a mom of four and crazy busy ALL the time. By nature I’m a perfectionist and an organizer, so this “rushing everywhere all the time” really drives me nuts. I guess I just deal with it and expect it’s normal for a busy mom of four. But I do feel like the kids get my leftovers…many many days. And also, I ONLY use my Sunday voice on Sundays….ok, no – not even then. 🙂

  82. At least for this year, my older daughter’s first year of going to school every day, I have said no to after-school activities. I have also gotten very accomplished at saying “no” when people ask me for things. I do say yes when I feel led to, but often I just say no. My most important “job” right now is raising a couple of adorable, creative, sweet little girls. The rest can wait.

  83. If someone can’t relate to this is because they are lying, really … any woman who works (at home or outside the home) and has children can relate to this!!!!!
    How do I stop? I don’t clean often, I find easy recipes to cook, nothing that takes too long, yes I know it would be great to make everything from scratch – I’m not saying I fed my kid junk but he’s not going to care if I made it from scratch or if it was store box – what matters to him is that his momma pays him attention.
    We try everyday, every time the sun comes up is a new opportunity to try again, some days we feel so successful, some … let’s not even talk about it 🙂
    Thank you for your honesty, you have such a wonderful way with words.
    breath … take a break …

  84. Dear Ladies who Run this site:
    Perhaps I shouldn’t ‘push it’ but…..
    another thought to enhance this site might be a ‘subscribe to all further comments’ and/or ‘subscribe to all replies to your comment’ options?
    Does anyone else think these options would enhance the ‘community’ atmosphere? (In addition to the ‘reply’ option).
    Thank you for kindly considering this. 🙂
    grateful for His gifts, HveHope

  85. *crumbs on the granite*, that should be my next website name.
    I enjoyed your post. One sentence stuck out to me. *your Sunday voice*. I’ll be camping out on that one for awhile.

  86. It’s a hard thing to do, take away that busyness and hurry when you have a house to take care of, kids, a husband. I try to not take on more than I can handle and when it’s a busy week the house has to be the first to go. I try to simplify my life but I still feel stressed. Glad to hear that I’m not the only one. I’m not sure there is a perfect answer, everyone has to find their own mix. Maybe schedule time to do nothing??? It’s sad that has to be done, huh?

  87. That hot tub tip works!I know 3 couples in my life who have done this and they swear by it. They talk to each other more, and go to bed relaxed and sleep better. This would help for all of you amazing women who get up at still dark o’clock for your quiet time! I wish!
    I don’t so much rush around as I simply sit around and waste time. I procrastinate, so when I really need to get something done, you know at the last minute, I really have to rush. I’m learning to spend a bit of time before I go to bed visualizing my day and planning every hour (I write it down). It almost never goes as planned, but it does help me to stay motivated and keep moving forward slow and steady instead of in frantic spurts. I also spend time before bed reading God’s word and writing in my prayer journal to try to reflect on the day and prepare for the next. If I could do all those things in the morning that would give me all evening to procrastinate!! Just haven’t been able to obey the alarm clock yet.

  88. I have felt so busy and hurried lately and just desiring to slow down. Thanks for sharing. Funny how I found this just when I needed to hear (read) it. God speaks to us in many ways, through women like you who share, a friend last night at church who encouraged me to let it go and get some sleep…the toys and dishes and laundry will be there tomorrow. I feel like I often give my kids and hubby “leftovers”. Thanks for posting this…you may never know all the women you encourage…but God is using you in a big way! I praise Him for that!

  89. Thanks for this post, Angie! I came upon it yesterday morning, before a train trip from Michigan to Chicago. Didn’t have a whole lot of time to digest it (since I was running late!)but then…the normally four hour train trip turned into a ten hour voyage, due to problems with the track signals. So I had a lot of time to reflect on life, including this post, and take a break from the hurry of life. How fitting. 🙂

  90. Beautiful reminder and one that has not fallen on deaf ears. My husband and I have both had the flu this week and in an odd sort of way, it’s been a blessing to be forced to SLOW down, way down and just be still. We have a 6 mo. old that is keeping us on our toes still, but for the most part, we have just been home, resting and spending time together…coughing 🙂 Hey, whatever works! Anyway, I have sensed the Lord impressing this very thing on me from the time I got pregnant last year. It’s been a lesson in listening to Him and obediently saying no to so much extra “stuff.” I’m not always successful but when I am, He is so faithful to bless those times and show me why He values my whole heart, undivided and still. I’m such a work in progress, but fortunately for me, that’s not a hinderance to Him. Thanks for reminding me of this tonight…love to read your stuff! You are a talented writer and beautiful daughter of the King 🙂

  91. Not that you need one more thing to read 🙂 but one book that really reminded me to slow down and focus more on relationships rather than things is “Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World”- I don’t actually always follow the advice but its still stuck.

  92. What a wonderful post. First time to your site and your are talking my language. God has been working some time on me about slowing down. And I’m seeing progress. But what He struck me with lately is how being in such a hurry can be a sin – well – I never thought about it that way. But when we are in a hurry we aren’t trusting God is truly in control. We aren’t making ourselves available to listen to His still small voice and follow its lead. I say this not to slap hands because I’m as guilty as the next person. But it changed my perspective about my actions and put a fire in me to really focus on slowing down in my life. What does God want from us. What has He given us to do – that should be our focus.
    The hurriedness of life is the lifestyle of the world. We are to be set apart – and what a great way to be. 😉
    Rachel
    http://stirringthedeep.com

  93. This has been weighing heavy on my heart, too. Even though I know my priorities, I find myself time and again in that place. My pastor talked about abiding in the rest to which we are called, and I realized how topsy-turvy my life is. I cram everything into the weekends — catching up on all the work projects I didn’t finish that week, supervising the 3 kids’ homework, writing and designing the church bulletin/newsletter, and attending Sunday morning and night church, squeezing in some laundry (P.E. and soccer uniforms, etc.). On Monday I collapse, exhausted, having totally forgotten to rest on the Sabbath… or any other time. God typically reminds me, through different situations, about what’s important… I think this time he’s moving on a whole lot of bloggers to reinforce what I already know to be true. I found a note in my Bible about a Scripture that had been spoken over me years ago. I guess I always need the reminder: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

  94. Something I just read 2 seconds ago from a friend.Definitely what I need… sounds like what you need too!
    Solitude: the creation of an open empty space in our lives by purposefully abstaining from interaction with other human beings so that FREED from competing loyalties we can be FOUND by God.

  95. One minute we are here and the next we are gone. Life goes so fast. We all know that. My husband and I struggled with infertility for 8 years until adopting internationally. Now we are adopting again and have been waiting almost 2 years to bring our little one home. Sometimes I don’t know if God chose me because I am a patient person or if he wanted me to be more patient. Anyway, the experience of wanting something month after month, year after year, has brought me to a place of deep trust. I can only trust that God has my life planned out and I rest in that assurance. Do not hurry your life away. Take time to go outside everyday and enjoy nature. There you will find peace and so many miracles. And it’s an easy place to relax with children and pets, too. My little guy and I go to the park every day with our dog or play in our backyard (as long as it’s not raining). No matter what’s on the schedule for the day, we spend time outside. Also, TV is not on the agenda. Oh, we watch TV at times, but it’s more important to spend time with family or use that time wisely getting chores done. Thanks for all your encouraging words everyone!!!!

  96. I dunno . . . maybe we need to give our motivations to the Lord – ask Him why we are doing something and if we need to be doing it. Maybe if we checked with Him more often, we wouldn’t end up with a bigger burden than we can carry – cause His yoke is easy and His burden is light right?
    I’m always overwhelmed – so I literally seek God every 15 minutes about what I should be doing. And sometimes life just is overwhelming – and that’s just the way it is – in those moments I rest in Him – and He keeps me sane.

  97. what a great post!!! I truly had a hard time slowing down enought to read it!Some day I do better than others!Stop by

  98. I hurry about twice a week; that’s a-plenty. I figure if food can be slow cooked my life can be slow lived. Living slow allows for time to listen to the leaves falling off the trees, reading my Bible, having a glass of wine with my husband and all the other slow things that make, good, memories. One thing I have learned, there’s more than enough work to accomplish at home w/out having to look elsewhere so I use the word “no”…a LOT; perhaps about twice as much as I use the word “yes”.
    “No, my schedule just doesn’t allow for added activities right now. I’ll get back with you when it does.”
    “No, thank you for thinking of me but I’m not able to help right now.”
    “No, I’m sorry but I can’t help as all my focus, right now, is on my family and our needs.”
    I can multi-task with the best of ’em. Unfortunately, that’s what my mind is doing when I’m trying to read, and understand, the Bible.
    -wry smile-

  99. This post was wonderful. And I do have a good granite tip: Use a glass and tile scraper.I normally wipe off my counter, scrape and then wipe it down again. It gets all the crumbs and gunk off of it and looks like new.