Rush Hour

Okay ya’ll, who ever crams way too much in to a short period of time? I’m not talking about procrastinating (although if that helps you relate to this post than so be it), I’m talking about having this tiny window and thinking you can fit a grand piano through it! For me, rushing tends to trigger anxiety. Anxiety causes me to throw any ounce of rationality out the window! It’s like there is a “me” inside of me that has to peek out and whisper “Hey girl, breathe! Trust in Jesus, it will be okay”

Well that was me today on my lunch break. I have 45 minutes to drive home, eat lunch, re-heat my coffee from this morning and be back at my desk. If only it went as planned! I got stuck behind a semi on the entrance ramp, so my time window was already cut short. I call my husband and tell him I’m on my way home (he happened to be off today) and to help me out he volunteers to make my spicy chicken ceasar salad for me. At this moment in my mind I just saved a few minutes, making my annoyance of this slow semi truck driver simmer down. I get home, grab my coffee mug, and dart inside.

When I open the door I hear the kids screaming about not sharing the couch space to watch trolls and my husband pacing back and forth on a business phone call. No salad made. No big deal, right? He mouths to me “your chicken is all I have ready” which is fine, it is still a help! As I’m getting my spinach and lettuce ready and chopping my chicken he is pacing around the kitchen and dining area, making me even more frantic and nervous. So now I am rushed, which flusters up my anxiety, and I’m nervous, and my kids are screaming like crazy bergens, and my puppy is jumping at my legs for some attention. My daughter starts crying that daddy told her to stay on the couch and my son sneaks off and falls in his bedroom and starts crying, my husband is still on a business call. Meanwhile, I have two minutes to get out the door and make it back to work on time. I grab my fork and plan to eat on the drive (sorry mom!). At this point I have forgotten my coffee on the counter and I’m frantically driving. I figured I could stop at Tim Hortons and grab an iced coffee; after all it was in my “allowance” for the week. Still feeling rushed but slightly enrouraged by the godly bean water within my reach, I place my order and finish my salad in the drive through line. Time to pay: where is my debit card? Oh, right… My son emptied my purse out while I was mixing my salad up. All I have on me is a Target gift card. I check the clock and I should have enough time to run inside and grab something from their Starbucks counter and be good! I get my iced latte and get back to my car; Starbucks wasn’t as fast as I planned so I’m rushing again. I pull out of my parking spot and quickly think “turn left instead of right and go out the north exit” NOT THINKING that I was coming up the wrong direction! So to correct myself I whip into a parking spot and end up getting stuck there. Well all hopes of being back to work on time are now lost. I am literally stuck in this parking spot and preparing to call my husband or coworker to come get in my car and get it out of the spot for me. I manage to wiggle out without damaging any other vehicles (thank you Jesus) and while I’m speeding back to work I start to think… God how can I turn this example of rushing frantically around to make it benefit you?

Now I’m driving and voice texting my colleagues that I’m almost back, feeling convicted that I just freaked out and nearly had a panic attack for really no reason! I am reminded of Proverbs 21:5

5. Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty.
(NLT)

All my rambling leads me to this one simple piece of scripture. If I would have PLANNED better last night and made my lunch I could have taken it to work, avoiding this fiasco all together. If I would have PLANNED and set my outfit out I wouldn’t scramble in the mornings. On a more serious note, if we PLAN for our insurance to renew we could save a few hundred dollars on that policy. Or we PLAN for auto repairs by having a special savings account to cover them. Or we PLAN to have 3-6 months in an extra savings account so that if we lose our job or get hurt we don’t accumulate credit card debt. If we PLANNED our days out we wouldn’t feel like we’re drowning in laundry and dirty dishes. When we have a routine and a schedule and a plan for each area of our life, those areas will be prosperous.

Easier said than done, right? Believe me, I am still working on building up my own savings accounts to meet specific needs and I’m still working on packing my lunch and laying out my outfits instead of watching just one more episode on Netflix… but I’M WORKING ON IT! Each week I get a little bit better with my home routine. Each pay cycle I get a little bit better with my budgeting. Sure, things will come up last minute and throw us off track, and that is OKAY! It’s even okay to have an irrational meltdown in a target parking lot every now and then, because guess what? You’re an amazing person wearing a lot of hats.

You see, when we let life overwhelm us we miss out on the most precious moments. We miss our toddler call us for help with their juice box for the last time, we miss a friendly smile and wave from someone passing by, we miss a call from our mom who will one day be gone, we miss God’s creation around us… I want to encourage you, in these meltdowns or anxiety attacks, when you’re feeling like you’re trying to do too much too fast, be still (Psalm 46:10) and ask God for some peace, for some grace, and for some strength.

May we one day “have it all together”, but until then, may we be sensitive enough for the Holy Spirit to get us through each day.

XOXO, The Noble Life

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