"Busyness is not a spiritual gift."
~ Lisa Harper ~
Tonight after dinner I was headed outside with three of my children for a walk. For the past week, I have been walking in the evenings for exercise and enjoying the nice weather. I was excited to get out tonight and make my way through our neighborhood.
I was standing in the street waiting for my daughter to get her scooter and fastening the buckle to a wiggly two year old in the stroller. My six year old had come racing down the driveway on his bike explaining something about the brakes when I heard the sound of a baby crying. I heard one of my neighbors calling across the street to my next door neighbor who I hadn't noticed sitting on her front porch with her new baby. She asked how she was doing and I heard my neighbor reply, "oh, just ok, my baby is really fussy and we aren't getting much sleep." They chatted for a few minutes when the neighbor who had been doing the inquiring shouted, "you know what that is like don't you Chris?" For a very small second I thought just answer the question, "yes" and be on your way down the street to enjoy the walk. After all I told myself, "you deserve this time alone with your own children and you have been looking forward to this walk all day and don't mess up your routine now," but before I could finish the thought, I heard the nudging of the Holy Spirit to go over and see how she was doing.
I walked up to her yard and asked if I could hold her seven week old son. She explained all about his fussiness, her lack of sleep (I could see it in her eyes) and her own post pregnancy health concerns. I remembered how difficult those early weeks and even months can be when you have a little one who doesn't sleep. For the next hour I stood outside and held her little one. He fussed for awhile, I talked and cooed with him. I patted his back and rubbed his tummy trying to bring some relief. My own children realized mom was no longer going for her walk and had headed off to join some kids in a game of baseball.
Soon the baby's dad who had been visiting with another neighbor came over and we all stood and talked while the little guy finally settled down and was fast asleep in my arms. He was even snoring. I continued to hold the baby while mom and dad were able to enjoy a moment. I stood and listened as they talked about how difficult the days and nights had been and how their three year old was handling the new addition to their family. I was no longer concerned about my own agenda, but truly grateful that for a moment my own busyness (or maybe my own plans might be a better word) had not interfered with an opportunity to share the Love of God through my available arms.
You see my neighbors know my husband is a Pastor. We know they don't go to church anywhere. We don't want to preach at them, but we do want to show the Love of God by how we live our lives. At the moment, I was hoping the other neighbor would stay and visit with her, but she didn't. Busyness is not a spiritual gift. In fact, often times (moms especially) run from here to there all in the name of "good" things and how many truly "good" things are they missing out on because they are just too busy? My home has been my "busyness" measuring stick for many years now. It usually speaks to whether or not I am too busy. Of course, there are always seasons when things get a bit crazy, but that is not where we want to live.
Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you Psalm 63:3
For more In "other" Words visit Christine at Fruit In Season