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Exactly HOW long?

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise,

making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.

Ephesians 5:15-16

 

I’ve been in a season where I’ve been giving my Time Management Talk, “Where is Your Time Going?” I dearly love the “ah-ha!” looks I see out in the audience as women realize they can manage their time with Jesus and for Him. Time management has to be my favorite kind of organization!

But as I was speaking, something was niggling at me… an idea that’s been in the back of my mind for a while. As I try to manage my time, am I working with all of the facts? Do we know how long it really takes to do the things that we regularly do?

We all constantly, and without truly thinking about it, estimate the time it will take to our daily tasks and plan accordingly. Estimation is a great tool and often a time saver.

Here’s the problem: We can guess wrong.

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Why Not to Trust My Planner Pages

Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
    but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.

Psalm 20:7

 

OK, the New Year is right around the corner and I’m super, duper excited to be able to offer you the official Organizing You Planner Pages—for free! (You can learn all about how awesome they are right here.) Basically, with the help of my wonderful publisher, I was able to create a unique planner system for those of us who are asking God to make the true plans.

Which is exactly why you can’t fully put your trust in them.

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The Martha of Homemaking

 

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one.”

Luke 10:41&42a

 

So, we cleared up in Part One that Martha absolutely should have put down her cleaning supplies and sat at the feet of Jesus with Mary. Mary chose the best thing, and we want to, as well—so we intentionally choose to enjoy quiet time with God every day.

But we know that even if Martha had been able to forget her chores and choose to be with Him, the chores would still be waiting. I have to wonder what would’ve happened if Martha had been able to do some of her chores and lean on the Lord at the same time.

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The Mary of Homemaking

“Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Luke 10:42

I identify way too much with Martha of Martha-and-Mary fame. If you don’t know their story, then you can read about these lovely ladies in Luke 10. It’s a true story about two ladies, their chores, and their Lord.

Mary decided to stop doing her chores in order to sit at Jesus’ feet. She made herself be still, just soaking up Jesus’ presence and learning what He was trying to teach her. I truly admire Mary. She chose the best thing. Martha didn’t.

Like me, Martha was distracted by the need to do the chores. I’m sure she felt even more driven after Mary opted out—no wonder she was worried and upset!

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This is for all the Driven People

In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat—for he grants sleep to those he loves.

Psalm 127:2

 

This post is for all the driven people. The first-borns, the onlys, and the others God made this way. Those Type-A’s out there who go and do and worry that the day will pass them by. People like me that can hardly stand to watch TV unless they’re doing something with their hands. (Check out one of my favorite memes here.)

All in all, I like being a driven person. I like being responsible, and getting things done. I like that people can count on me to do what I say I’ll do, and do it well.

But there are drawbacks to being so driven.

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Easter isn’t the End

Read it!

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

-James 4:7

Think it through

We’re coming to the end of our Lenten series. Easter is just days away. I’m looking forward to church. I’m looking forward to watching my kids find Easter baskets full of spring and summer treats. I’m looking forward to celebrating with my extended family.

And let’s face it, I’m looking forward to a Cadbury egg.

I’ve done this giving up chocolate thing before, and I know that first taste of chocolate will be almost too sweet, almost too good. It will be delightful, and I’ll be so thankful in that moment—He is Risen that we might have abundant and eternal life!

But soon the taste of chocolate will be, though still wonderful, commonplace. A part of my average day. Or worse, again, a temptation leading me further away from God instead of closer to Him.

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How to Create an Atmosphere of “Yes”

A cheerful heart is good medicine,
but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.

Proverbs 17:22

I’m a positive gal in general, and I’d like to think that I face life with a great big “Yes!”

But I’m also a planner, and when something outside of my plan presents itself, my knee-jerk reaction is, “No.”

Just ask my poor kids. This is the worst time of year to ask me for anything—my mind is so full of things to arrange that it’s like a constantly shifting puzzle without room for one more piece.

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Escaping into True Reality

 

“Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.”

-John 4:23

 

What’s your favorite way to relax and escape? You probably watch a few favorite TV shows. Maybe you love surfing the web, or playing game aps on your phone. Perhaps you do all three at the same time!

We have loads of ways to occupy our thoughts—plenty of false realities to choose from.

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Where is Your Baby Jesus?

“And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.”

Luke 2:12

 

During the Christmas season when my little Oliver was one year old, I was constantly hunting for the Baby Jesus.

Oliver loved our Fisher Price Nativity—but not the whole set. He ignored the sweet donkey and the sheep. He looked right past Joseph and Mary and the Innkeepers. He went straight for the Baby Jesus.

As the season progressed, I found the figurine in more and more unusual places. In front of the fridge, then behind a chair. On a shelf, or shoved under the couch, or thrown over the baby gate.

I began to worry that Oliver might hide the Baby Jesus somewhere I couldn’t find him. Christmas was coming, and the set would be missing its most important piece! I constantly asked Oliver, “Where’s your Baby Jesus?”

I needn’t have worried, because I found him every time.

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Food Makes Me Happy… Doesn’t It?

Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven.”

—John 6:32

 

You know how certain phrases become part of a family’s inner language? Someone says something so cute or funny that your family members keep repeating it… until it simply becomes a part of what you say to each other. A unique family saying with a special meaning all its own.

When my little sister was just a few years old, she inadvertently created one of our favorite family sayings. She looked at her dinner plate, heaved a huge sigh of contentment, and said dreamily, “Food makes me happy.”

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