Well, I made a list.
You know the one.
THE MASTER LIST.
All the things I need to get done before the holidays. All the things I’ve been procrastinating for months. All the things I need to complete before the end of the year. All the things I simply cannot put off any longer.
Work things. School things. Emails. Fees. Registrations. Kids’ sports things. Christmas things.
ALL THE THINGS.
I’m telling you, it’s an impressive list.
I sat for a day or two completely paralyzed by the daunting enormity of this list.
Unable to take any action. Unsure where to start.
And in the middle of my inaction, Anxiety leaned over and began whispering in my ear…
There is NO WAY.
You’ll never get it all done.
What is wrong with you???
Why did you wait so long???
Why is it so hard???
Other people do grown-up things…but not YOU.
Anxiety’s incessant whispering turned to shouting and the words YOU ARE A FAILURE!!! constricted around my chest until I couldn’t breathe.
And, somehow, I started to believe Anxiety was right.
I AM FAILING.
Failing at motherhood. Failing at marriage. Failing in my career. Failing at life.
Then a few days ago, after I dropped the big kids to school I sat for a few moments in the car.
Trying to catch my breath. Trying to push that shouting out of my ears. Trying to push Anxiety out of my mind. Just trying.
And right before I moved to shut off the engine to go inside, my favorite song came on the radio.
Lauren Daigle’s beautiful voice rang out “Remind me who I am because I need to know…” and pushed its way through Anxiety’s awful shouting.
REMIND ME WHO I AM BECAUSE I NEED TO KNOW.
Tears trickled down my cheeks and suddenly I could breathe a little easier as this clear, calm, confident FEELING pressed into my heart.
I KNOW WHO YOU ARE…
You are strong and smart and capable.
You have done hard things before. REALLY hard things. I know…because I was there with you.
You are a mother and a wife and a writer and a physician and a daughter and a sister and a friend.
You are My daughter above all things.
AND I KNOW WHO YOU ARE…
You can do hard things.
You have Me…and we can do hard things together.
I will never leave your side.
I KNOW WHO YOU ARE…BECAUSE YOU ARE MINE.
I went in the house then and sat quietly on the couch with my little boy, breathing in that rumpled-little-boy smell on the top of his head while he watched cartoons and repeating over and over in my head…I AM KNOWN.
And so, I began.
I delivered some things. I returned an email (or ten). I paid that fee. I submitted that post. I registered for this…and that. I made some copies and turned in that paperwork. I called here. I ordered that. I returned some things.
I circled around to Goodwill and the post office and the school office and the church and the movie store and Costco.
I stayed up late completing a lengthy online registration for my licensing exam coming up.
I made progress.
I wish I could say my list is complete. That somehow ALL THE THINGS have been checked off. That a miracle occurred, and everything was finished in a snap (actually the opposite is true as I discovered I’m more behind than I thought on something for work).
I wish I didn’t have to struggle so hard at ALL THE THINGS life throws my way.
But the truth is I CAN do hard things.
HE REMINDS ME WHO I AM.
I am HIS.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13
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