Let’s talk about your routines, Let’s talk about the mundane. Let’s talk about all the little things in your life that if left unattended to can bring you the greatest pain. Let’s talk about the little things in your life that if attended to, can bring you the biggest joys.
I’ve been reading again. Trust me, ya’ll. This one is good. Author Melanie Shankle released a new book this month and it’s all about appreciating the small things. Melanie knows what it’s like to get so caught up in wanting something to take our breath away that we lose our amazement for every breath we take. In Church of the Small Things, she invites us to view our daily tasks as the holy and precious callings they are. As we see how real life meets eternity every day, we can let go of the pressure to experience big moments and delight in the small ones instead.
I get it. Life can be boring. And there are times we do want the extra. But in all the extra, sometimes God tells us to slow down, do the task right in front of us (no matter how small it seems) and allow Him to move and perform the extra. In a moment of transparency, let’s talk about understanding. Because I tend to think I have it. All the time. And everytime I do, my heart leads me back to this simple verse in the bible:
Trust in and rely confidently on the Lord with all your heart
And do not rely on your own insight or understanding.
In all your ways know and acknowledge and recognize Him,
And He will make your paths straight and smooth [removing obstacles that block your way].
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the Lord [with reverent awe and obedience] and turn [entirely] away from evil.
In other words my friends, we can be confident in knowing that the instructions for daily living come from God. He has a plan, He knows the why, and he knows what’s next. It’s up to us to listen and do the routine things so He can do the extra. And in the routine, we can greatly appreciate the most important facts about the journey he has us on.
Toni’s Small Things
The morning traffic. – Means I have extra time to catch up with friends, loved ones, and the kids on our way to school.
Hayfever and allergies. – Means I’m going to take a much needed nap today because allergy meds make me sleepy and I always can use a nap.
Pajamas. Clothes that feel like pajamas. Pajamas. – Comfortable in my coffee run, comfortable at home, comfortable at work. If my clothes are comfortable, I feel like I can do absolutely anything.
A good fragrance. – Right now, I alternate between two. One cost $2.99 at my local beauty supply store, and the other cost about $50. One is light and airy, the other is is a little more sultry and sensual. I alternate depending on my mood.
450 (or more) Unread emails – This used to bother me. I used to be one of those people who has to constantly check email and read them all. The weekend my kids got baptized was very busy and filled with time well spent with the people we love. The Monday after the baptism celebration, I had 450 unread emails and an incredibly full heart.
Hoodies – A hug in fleece. That’s the best way to describe it.
Chai tea latte, no water – Changed my coffee existence completely.
ACV water – Same as above. Get some apple cidear vinegar in your life right away. Curbs appetite, regulates blood sugar, sustains energy levels.
Living in community – For a long time I thought I needed to isolate my friends. I would have work friends, neighborhood friends, church friends, sorority friends, mommy friends, etc. Life has become much easier to accept that my friends can overlap into other parts pf my life because if they are true friends, they should be familiar with all the parts of what make my world. When you make a decision to do life with someone, you are making a decision to accept them as they are (shortcomings excluded) and navigate the road God leads you on together.
8 pm phone conversations – My relationship with my parents has changed a lot over the past few years, especially since we live about 1,000 mile apart. One of our things is to talk every night at 8 pm. Every single night. I wouldn’t trade it (or them) for the world.
Honey Mustard – The best condiment around. To think that some restaurants don’t serve it is a travesty.
Good Hair Days – My hair is big and curly, even when flatironed. I’ve learned that big hair is who I am, and on the days when the curls are flowy I am amazed that something I was born with 45 years ago could bring me so much joy.
Peace that surpasses all understanding. I was talking to a friend recently and we were talking about how easy it is to become overwhelmed between our schedules. our parenting, and our responsibilities. Even in the overwhelm, we have found this scripture to be our guide:
Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
And because we consciously do life together, we balance the overwhelm and the frustrations (because that is totally normal) with love and appreciation for who we are and who we are working to become.
For more information about Melanie Shankle, to read her blog, or buy her book, click here.