Today, I’m featuring a guest post from Nicole Burke, one of my dear mentees and friends. Here blog always has fresh insights to everyday occurrences with God. Check out Burning Bushes, Monday through Friday. You’ll be glad that you did.
(P.S. – If you haven’t had the chance to check out my blog this week, we began grappling with mentoring and parenting, using James as our textbook. Start here.)
When it’s just me here with the kids and I’m not doing anything more than bouncing babies and pushing swings, hardly more than reading books and playing Legos, little beyond sweeping and stacking, I can feel the threat of it. When it’s quiet and it’s just me here, I can start to think that this day, perhaps even this life is (can I admit this?) insignificant.
When I was writing grants in the office or climbing mountains in Asia, when I was leading a small group or teaching a class, I suppose the threat was there, too, just a bit quieter.
Is anything I’m doing doing anything? Do any of these everyday matters matter?
Important? Lasting? Significant?
This is the question that makes me look to this screen for an email, a comment, a something that lets me know that something I did or said matters. This is the question that makes me make a to do list a mile long. This is the question that can keep me voicing ‘yes’ to any invitation or request on my time, thinking that more will somehow make this life start to matter. This is the question that makes me question even when I’m doing exactly what I need to be doing.
But this is not the way to make my mundane moments more significant. I can do more, I can do the most, even, and yet never do the most important.
“The decision to abide right now is the absolute most that you can do.”
Kandy Persall, Hungry for More
I read this and underline it twice. Really? The most important thing to do is not on my to do list or my lesson plan, not somewhere here on Facebook or Gmail or even here in this space? The most important thing is not somewhere out there in an office or on a mountaintop? The most important thing is also the most accessible thing?
On a Friday morning, I sit and wonder how to make the matters of this day matter. The to do list is too long, but the list of the way He loves and provides is longer. There are no emails in my inbox, but I ask for grace to go to His Word instead. There’s no research grant to write, but I ask Him to abide in me and trust that this is a prayer He’ll gladly grant. I can’t find a mountain (beyond the dish stacks and the piles of laundry) to climb, but I ask for Him to sit me with Him on His mountain-that His beatitudes would become my attitudes.
I sit and wonder at this wonderful, accessible significance–that the absolute most I can do today, at this very moment, is Abide.
Hungry for More is written by Kandy Persall, a dear friend and mentor who’s written here at Burning Bushes since the start in 2009. The book is unique: written with a suggested daily reading of the Gospel, with excerpts from Kandy’s life overseas used to teach profound truths about the abundant life that can be lived when we abide in Christ’s Spirit. While many female authors are able to unlock great biblical truths, Kandy’s writing is a rare find-as she takes a very biblical approach to unlocking the way toward Spirit-filled living.
Just reading her words have reminded me of truths she prayed for me ten years ago…that we don’t just need to know more, we need to abide more, to trust more, to press into Christ more. I’ve seen Kandy live this and wholeheartedly recommend this book as a rare writing that’s theologically sound and yet challenges our western perspective on what it means to walk by the Spirit. You can find it for less than $10 here.
*just so you know, I was not compensated for this recommendation.