Can there be too many Good Things?

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Post by Contributing Writer, Emily C.

November is upon us, and with this time of year comes excitement and chaos, busy afternoon schedules and cold quiet nights. There are so many fun and wonderful traditions and activities to participate in during this time of year.

Our lives can quite quickly become overwhelming and the spirit of the season, thankfulness, family, joy, celebration can be easily overlooked or lost in the shuffle.

To fully participate in the season, and in the joy and family celebrations that await us, we must find time to rest. We cannot be running from holiday concert, to cookie party, to kids’ classes, to school, to work, to dinner parties, to _________ (fill in the blank!). We will quickly become overtired, burned out and desperate for the season to come to an end. There is such a thing as too many good things!

A few years ago I experienced this first hand. It was our first season in a new neighborhood where we were significantly more connected than ever before. We had friends nearby that we spent time with often, busy relationships with new neighbors, a home-school co-op in its first year and a multitude of other great things to participate in.

But as I drove home from a huge DIY fair that I had organized with a friend as a part of our community’s response to Advent Conspiracy, I suddenly was overcome with a headache that by the next morning turned into the most awful flu I have ever experienced.

I had been so consumed with all the great opportunities around me that I refused to slow down, to say no, to pass on one event so that I could cherish slow moments of the season. I ended up on the couch for close to a week and missed family moments that were some of the most important of the season.

We are commanded to rest. It is necessary and it is good.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
Matthew 11:27-29

I encourage you this year to step back and look at the season that lies before us. Evaluate what you want your priorities to be for your family this year. Determine which things are necessary, which things you truly desire to take part in, and which things are a distraction for your family.

Embrace the small things; raking leaves on a crisp sunny afternoon, roasting pumpkin seeds for an after-school snack, baking cookies to share with neighbors, quiet evenings crafting handmade Christmas gifts, conversations over warm cocoa or cider, the scent of candles and of dinner in the oven.

All of our schedules this fall and holiday season will look different. Our families and our personalities will affect the number of events in our week and the places we go and the things we participate in. But if our heart and our attitude are ones of thanksgiving and joy through it all, it will be good.

I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.
Psalm 69:29-31

Emily lives in Salt Lake City with her husband Jeremy and their 3 wild and crazy kiddos! She loves reading, running, baking yummy treats for her family, her early morning yoga, walking to the library and all things creative and crafty. She especially enjoys exploring nature with her children and learning side by side with them. You’ll find her chatting about all aspects of life at her blog, Industrious Emily* and also sharing her crafty side through the blog, Life at the Table.

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4 comments to Can there be too many Good Things?

  • Very wise words, Emily, and ones that we’ve been contemplating in our house this very last few days. Trying to balance all the busy holiday opportunities with the regular demands of house, home, children, spirit, work; can certainly get exhausting. Lovely reminder to slow down before you speed up too much!

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  • Thank you Emily! What a wonderful reminder!

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  • Great post! Thanks for sharing this. My husband and I have been talking about this too. We fill our lives up with so much “stuff”, when we step back, we realize that those things are what empty us the most. Slowing down for sure. Simplifying life and just being present are what we are focusing on! Thanks!!

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  • Wise words! My husband and I usually have calm, relaxing, schedule-free weekends, which I always LOVE!! However, our not having any kids does, I’m sure, make it easier to do that. Sometimes, I should probably do more. 😉

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