Years ago, I learned that being overly busy and overbooked is not something my introverted personality thrives upon. I’m prone to burnout if my schedule doesn’t allow enough margin for regular times of quiet and solitude. To function at my highest level, I need a good amount of downtime.
The past five months have seen very little in the way of margin or downtime. And there was nothing to indicate the pace would change. That meant it was time to reassess my commitments and make some changes.
I like the idea of change. But reorganizing my priorities meant that some things had to go. And that’s no fun whatsoever. It made me rather pouty.
But I’m being a big girl and making the changes that are needed to recover my margin. The decisions have been announced but the benefit won’t be seen for some time. I need to hang on and be responsible until the margin returns.
Until then, I want to take strides toward the margin I know is just around the bend (I can’t see it yet, but I can sense it in my bones). I’m going to reach out toward the margin I’ve been missing by slowing down and remembering how it used to be before things got nutty.
One way I’m reaching out for margin is with Ann Kroeker’s Slow-Down Fast during Lent. She says:
I’m willing to slow down in all areas, from my schedule to my spending; from my technology use to my thought patterns.
As I simplify and slow down, my desire is to find the right pace for preparation—I want to slow down for the 40 days of Lent in order to walk through Maundy Thursday and Good Friday attentively, reflectively . . . and then to celebrate Easter Sunday with my whole self focused on Jesus Christ, the risen Savior.
Oh, how I love all that!
What will I do to participate in the Slow-Down Fast? My plan is rough. Here are some things I’m considering:
- downtime with the Lord (in the Word, journaling, resting in His presence)
- reading time (how I’ve missed reading these past months!)
- media limits (less input from external noise—not sure what that will entail)
- offerings (serve, give, connect, praise, etc.—love God by loving others well)
My hope is that the Slow-Down Fast will bring sweeter communion with the Lord as I set my focus upon Him in the coming weeks.
Do you plan to observe Lent? Consider this fast of the heart and soul—the Lord is sure to meet you in unexpected ways.