November 27, 2012

Living Quietly Revisited: Choosing Commitments

During this busy time of year, I need to give much thought to my commitments!

...aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you, so that you may walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one.
~1 Thess. 4:11-12

Thoughts of living a quiet life continue to woo me. They were birthed as the result of a particularly chaotic season in our family's life - several weeks of commitments every night. The activities that clamored for my attention soon lost their appeal, leaving me tired, cranky and empty. It also brought conviction.

Housework and paperwork, too long neglected, loomed large before me. I had sacrificed my duties on the altar of busyness. 

Merriam - Webster defines busy as foolishly or intrusively active.


A quiet life also demands answers to some hard questions regarding commitments.

Am I using this as an opportunity to glorify God? Athletics, community organizations, and other activities outside church can certainly testify to God's goodness and grace. Does my participation and attitude reflect that? Even in my commitments away from home, I must remember my calling (1 Cor. 10:31).

Is this helping me to grow in the Lord? Preparing Sunday School lessons offers that opportunity, as do taking meals to those who are sick and befriending parents of my girls' teammates. I must seek activities that help me to live in light of the Gospel.

Is this causing me to sacrifice my primary responsibilities to God and family? Even church activities can cause us to spend too much time away from home, or to be too tired to care for my family when I am home. I must be careful not to neglect my family in the name of serving God.

I am happy my man and my girl play sports, but I would rather splash in the pool with them than cheer them on from the sidelines.  I am thankful for my daughter's youth group, but I would rather learn God's Word with her than hear what her leader taught her.

If our commitments don't lend time for the things I'd rather do, they aren't worth it.

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