The wash machine was agitating, the dryer was tumbling, the dishwasher was humming, the vacuum was howling, the teapot was whistling, alerting me it was time to pour the water into my french press, and beautiful music was being created around my house early this morning. I opened up the windows to what is most likely our last cool front of the season, breathed in the crisp air, took in the view of a home that needed tending to and my routine of extreme multi-tasking promptly began. It is what I do, in an effort to maximize the amount of time I have on my day off for what has to be done so that I can get to what I want to do, like gardening, writing, playing my bagpipes, scrapbooking, exercising, and reading that novel I have been trying to finish. All was going smoothly as my domestic diva skills had me gliding through the house from room to room (hey, you have to have fun with this stuff), feeling totally accomplished by the fact that the wall clock had not even registered 9:00 in the morning yet. This was going to be a great morning, and I would be done in record time, leaving me plenty of time to get to some “me” time before meeting my husband for lunch.
Most of my cleaning whirlwinds produce wonderful results, but there is always the potential for problems when you are an extreme multi-tasker. What began as a finely tuned orchestra of household music soon ended in a waste of time and money as I removed the second load of laundry from the wash machine. I remember walking past it during the rinse cycle, thinking, “I don’t remember that detergent smelling so fresh; it must just be because the windows are open.” Where that logic came from, I haven’t a clue! Removing each article of clothing, I found dryer sheet after dryer sheet tangled, twisted, stuck and hiding between the layers of fabric. Somewhere in the midst of my whirlwind multi-tasking, I had not taken notice of a newly opened box of dryer sheets falling from the shelf above into the machine. To make things worse, the cardboard box was no longer, and what remained were tiny wet pieces of cardboard and lint which formed a layer of fiber over each piece of clothing. Thirty minutes later, I found myself rewashing an entire load of laundry, needlessly running up my water bill and adding one more item to my grocery store list.
Although this inconvenience did not end up high on the totem pole of frustration, it serves as a reminder of the many unnecessary inconveniences and expensive disasters I have experienced as a result of extreme multi-tasking. The truth of the matter is, I like being busy! I like accomplishing! I thrive on being purpose driven! This way of life was easy to explain away when I was the mother of three young children. It only increased when these three children became teenagers, and my list of duties became longer. I know I am built this way and always have been. However, the difficulty with this part of my personality is, when unchecked I can find myself in a constant state of moving and doing until I arrive at the end of my day with nothing to show for it except a long list of checked off tasks, none of which include leaving room for what God may have had for me that day. I am often so busy with my own agendas, He would have to scream over the noise of the household machines for me to hear.
If I am to be honest with myself, I must scratch a little deeper and admit that I like to be in charge of every aspect and circumstance of my day. I know I am not alone; we all do. This need drives me to accomplish and remain in control and independent. There is not a day I wake up that I do not have a list of plans to accomplish and a particular way of how to do it; my way. Unfortunately, this tendency to be busy and in charge can leave me empty, scattered in my thoughts, unable to shut down the endless compartments in my brain long enough to relax, stressed and completely inflexible to God’s leading in my day.
For the past few months, I know in the midst of my endless busyness, God has been gently nudging me to do something I have been putting off for a long time. He has boldly placed several obvious indicators in my path which I would have to be completely clueless not to get, and it has finally occurred to me that not only am I wasting time in being busy, I am being disobedient in not stepping out to let Him direct my path. I am allowing my busyness to override His voice. So, this week, I am yielding. I am yielding my list of endless tasks and agendas to step into the the path I know I am being called to. I am rearranging my schedule to allow time in each day for this path to develop, letting go of those things that do not matter on a daily basis. I guess what I am doing is prioritizing and eliminating unnecessary doing so that I can submit my plans to His leading and give Him permission to direct.
This is so much easier said than done for an extreme multi-tasking Domestic Diva. Something tells me, God has His work cut out for Him! OK God, I am sitting, and I am listening….Really!
Luke 2:52 Project Plan:
1. Add scriptures to index cards, label as “Growing in Favor with God.
2. God calls each one of us on a daily basis to yield to His leading. Where is He calling you to
yield? Have you felt the tugging of this calling for some time? If so, what has been keeping
you from embracing it and stepping out in faith.
3. What will it take to fulfill this calling? What small steps each day will be necessary? Where can
you scale down your day to make room?
4. What new skills do you need to develop in order to fulfill this calling?
5. Give God permission to order your steps. A great way to do this and keep it ever before you is to
write down the acknowledgement of where you are being led and extend your permission in a
visual manner on the written page. Place this is a prominent place where your attention will be
drawn to it regularly as a reminder to stick to your commitment.
6. Pray for God to lead.