Ever find yourself sounding like this at 11pm???
Yes? Well, me too. Way too often."Ahhh! Where did the time go?-I still have dishes to put away.
Laundry to do.
....The kitchen floor needs mopped,
And the bathroom is a mess!Oh well, guess it will wait until tomorrow."
Now, I know it's true. I have toddlers. They are like having two miniature hurricanes constantly whirling around the house. They always seem to need me, and I like being needed. I like sitting down to read books and play legos.
But not always.
Sometimes, I just wish I could have a clean and spotless house for just an hour. Sometimes, I just want to be by myself to study, work, or practice violin without two little people bursting in on every instant. Sometimes, I wish I could cook a meal without tripping over two bodies clinging to my legs. Sometimes, I wish I could just take a shower or use the restroom uninterrupted.
And that's when I have to remember, time equals opportunity. This has perhaps been a theme God's been teaching me this year, as several posts have talked about it. It's easy to fall prey to Satan's lie that I don't have enough time, that time is my enemy.
No no! Time is opportunity. It must be spent in some way. I MUST plan. Time, like money, is easily wasted if there is no budget, no schedule, no boundaries to keep me aware and in charge. God gives 24 hours (that's 1,440 minutes!) every day. Time that I MUST account for.
- God is my number one priority. I must remember throughout my day that spending time in His Word and in His presence through prayer is NEVER wasted.
- I am a wife. My husband needs a wife that is refreshed and ready to greet him with an excited smile and a kiss when he comes home. He needs me to maintain a home that is conducive to ministry and yet comfortable to live in. He needs me to not be exhausted at night so that we can spend quality time together.
- I am a mother. My boys need me. All. the. time. Yet, I need to teach them to play on their own, to be independent and responsible. To be kind to each other and know how to interact without an umpire. They need hugs, kisses, relationship, routine, and discipline.
- Also, I am a student. I'm investing in future ministry by the time I spend in language study now. I must remember that my learning is directly correlated with how much studying I do. And, my ministry later is dependent on me knowing the language!
- Oh yes, and I have a home to keep. Yes. It needs attention too.
Therefore, I have begun to think of the time in my day as opportunity. Opportunity given from the Lord to invest in my above listed priorities. When I give account to God, I don't want to be ashamed. How can I accomplish budgeting my time? Unfortunately, both our home and Georgian culture don't really lend themselves to a schedule. But, I can:
- Make a list. Even if it's only mentally. Then, throughout the day, when I have time, I pick something off the list to accomplish.
- Clean as you go. Examples: I put away dishes while lunch is warming up on the stove. I sweep the porch while supervising the boy's outside play time. I wipe off Z's tray and chair before letting him out of his seat.
- Set timers! I don't know how many times I have left the laundry until bedtime simply because I put it in the washer and totally forgot about it. This helps with the boys' playtimes as well.
- Get out of the house to recharge. Sometimes this is just to the grocery store. Other times, I make it to a coffee shop to study or to a friends' house to visit (by myself!). Outings also make great relationship builders with my boys and give great opportunity for one-on-one time.
- Limit computer/electronic time until I have done _____________.
- What are some ways you have found to claim the time?
I have found great freedom as I have attempted to take back my time by viewing it as an opportunity. I'm not stressed by what I don't get done, but rather can celebrate what I DID do that invested in my priorities. When I'm not stressed, but have clear goals, I am a happier person, which makes the day get better and better. My boys don't become bothers and inconveniences, but bolsters and investments. Yay for claiming back for God that time that God has given me!
"Wherefore He saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time because the days are evil. Wherefore, be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is."