schedule, rhythm, and values.

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“there are very few ‘normal’ weeks, maybe 2 per year.” – steve backlund

my career began in a maternity home.  sure we had a schedule for all of the staff that worked in the house.  some days it even said 9-5.  it worked most some of the time.  pregnant woman can be kinda rude and especially the teenage ones seem to enjoy interrupting sleep.  i often got calls at 2am to take a girl to the hospital.  when i lived in the house, there were many middle of the night knocks on the door.  (don’t tell, but i kept tylenol pm close by for those who were far enough along to take it.) don’t judge me until you have lived in a house with 12 pregnant girls for at least a year.  then you have full permission to judge.

after over 2 years there, i moved across the country to washington dc to be a part of a house of prayer.  for a good portion of the year, my hours there were actually 9-5, only it was 9pm to 5am.

now, my husband and i travel an average of 10-20 days a month.  we are blessed to spend our days together pouring into something so much bigger than us.  on the road, sometimes our hours look more like 5-11pm.  sometimes the alarm clock goes of at 3:30am, so we can catch the 6am flight. then at home, our schedules are more relaxed, scattered with meetings/responsibilities at our local church, and one on ones with friends and people we are mentoring. and rest, that beautiful glorious thing called rest.

although predictability, schedules, and rhythms are nice.  i’ve found another way to not only survive but to thrive as the life of ministry ebs and flows.

i choose to live from my core values rather than waiting for a normal week.  they are all to rare.  i can’t watch  life slip from my hands until everything is nicely predictable in my day planner.

a couple years ago, i sat down and wrote out what my core values are.  that is what dictates my schedule.  my schedule does not dictate me.  i want to be known for living a life of purpose and passion, not for how full my schedule was or wasn’t.

These are my core values…

1. Intimacy/Prayer- I cannot thrive without a strong emphasis on intercession and the secret place.

2. Purity- I long to represent my Love and Savior well through what I do and say. I am passionate about walking in purity in my thoughts, actions, and relationships.

3. Rest- I desire that all of the ministry in my life stems from abiding intimately with my heavenly Father, my Savior, the Holy Spirit. I have a high value of living from the place of the finished work of the cross. I don’t want to work to pay for things that have already been purchased.

4. Home- I have a strong need and love for creating home wherever I am. I have a high value for safety and creating atmospheres where others feel free to be who they are.

5. Communication- I have a high value for good, honest, and honoring communication.

6. Family- It all begins and ends with family. Therefore it is vitally important how the years between birth and death affect those closest to me. I long to be a blessing to my family and led them closer to the heavenly Father.

7. Joy/ thankfulness- I see thankfulness as a huge asset to joy and contentment. I want my lips to be constantly thanking God for his goodness and therefore ushering in His Presence. I want my laugh to be a familiar sound to those who know me.

8. Beauty and Creativity- It brings me life to make things beautiful. I want to see people and things thriving in their best form.

9. Health- I have a high value for pursuing healthy ways of living, and to be consistently improving in this area.

10. Connection- I have a strong need for healthy, thriving connections with others.

11. Intentionality- I will live my life with intention and purpose, passionately pursuing the things and people that God calls me to.

Do you have core values?

What are they?

rest for the soul

Rest.  Yes, please, I’ll take the super-sized version.

ImageWe had a busy week last week, filled with amazing friends from many seasons, a gorgeous wedding, house guests, an ear infection, and not so fun cold.

As I enter this week, my soul craves the One it loves.  I pulled an old Andrew Murray off the shelf called Abide in Christ.  Andrew Murray has brought transformation to my life through his books.  They are excellent.  Read them.  It’ll change your life too. Image

The pages are filled with heavy-hitting one liners.

“Only abiding in Jesus gives rest in Him.”

“He destined you to something better than short-lived blessedness.”

And this one really stood out to me.  He is talking about when disappointment has crept in, expectations have not been met, and we’ve lost sight of what was so real and true when we first met Him.

“The answer is very simple.  You wandered from Him.  The blessings He bestows are all connected with His ‘come to Me,’ and are only to be enjoyed in close fellowship with Him.”

Although at first it feels sharp and convicting, it doesn’t take long until it is a warm comfort.  Oh yes, I am just being a part of what He is doing.  Oh yes, my job is to stay close.  Oh yes, He desires intimacy above works.  Oh yes, I can bear much fruit when I abide it in Him.

So, it’s back to the basics, and first things first.  First comes the intimacy then comes the fruit.  Sure, there is a kingdom to advance.  Yes, there is a war to fight.  Absolutely, there is darkness to penetrate, but why would I want to do that without the Light of the world?

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Matthew 11:28-29

Come to Him and you will find rest for your soul.   Let yourself crawl into His arms, experience His love wrapping around you.  He is the all-sufficent One.  Allow His Spirit to release life into your Spirit.

Have a happy Tuesday!