5 Days Into the New Year and Scrambling

Okay, so it’s 5 days into the New Year and I am already feeling behind. How about you?

By this time I had hoped to have much more accomplished on my “catch up and take a breath” list like: finish reading our Christmas cards, take down the tree and put away the decorations, reply to emails and Christmas greetings, maybe even by now have read a book or two that has been waiting, plus a few jillion other things- like write this blog after finding a relevant, interesting topic to blog about today.

None of this has happened and the magnetic beckoning of “the return to life after the holidays fast lane” finds resistance deep in my soul.  It is hard not to feel majorly stressed. I find myself scrambling for “what in the world can I cut out to stay sane” this week, next week, the entire month. Is God calling me to shift, cut something out or is this just one of those intense time periods that catches one by surprise that I must live into and weather until the storm is passed? Is He trying to get my attention to offer me a different way of doing and being?

There have been legitimate and unexpected interruptions, burdens to help carry, events to celebrate, preparations to accomplish that have eaten into that “catch up and take a breath” fantasy. How does this happen? It just happens. Dreams are transplanted by reality and the options shrink. I must adjust, live into the agenda God is creating AND trust His sovereign orchestration of my life. Or, I can fall apart and complain and gripe and become seriously unpleasant to live with. Who made this list anyway?

The devotional book, Jesus Calling, suggested this morning a new habit in response to whatever happens to you – “I trust you, Jesus.” Ironically, I had been meditating on Isaiah 58:11 “The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.” How quickly encouraging, instructive words of Scripture are forgotten when the pressure mounts.

I need to return once again to a landing place where my soul can receive nourishment. As I focus on Him in His Presence He gives grace to continue on in the midst of the busyness and the pull of responsibility. A great way to do that is to start thanking God for all he has done, for His never ending, always present Presence… and to remember He makes the lists!

Gail Seidel served as Mentor Advisor for Spiritual Formation in the Department of Spiritual Formation and Leadership at Dallas Theological Seminary (DTS) and as an Adjunct Professor in the D Min in Spiritual Formation in the D Min Department at Dallas Theological Seminary. She has a BA in English from the University of Texas, a Masters in Christian Education from Dallas Seminary and a D Min in Spiritual Formation from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. She is a contributor to the textbook, Foundations of Spiritual Formation, Kregel Academic. She served as co-director for Christian Women in Partnership Russia with Entrust, an international church leadership-training mission. She and her husband Andy live in Fredericksburg, Texas. They have 2 married children and 6 wonderful grandchildren--Kami, Kourtney, Katie, Mallory, Grayson, and Avery.


  • SonShine

    Thanks Gail for this gentle reminder to “trust Jesus” in all circumstances. Life continues to be busy busy busy and I for some reason don’t think God wants it that way. However, all that being said, if we do take time to be with Him as each new day awakens, it makes the busyness of life palatable and exciting. What a privilege to serve Him and to project Him before others in this busy work a day world.

    • Gail Seidel

      I think you are right.

      I agree that just maybe God's approved way of doing and being would look a little less hectic and might even be slower.I guess we need to forge on and let Him sort it out for us and instruct us in what pleases Him. I'm thinking that He already has in the interchange between Mary and Martha Martha and Mary in Luke 10:42.