Friday, September 19, 2008

The Gift of Time

I'd made plans to go back to school this year. Having attended the school orientation and experienced a (rather unsatisfactory) visit with the academic advisor, I was all set to go. Then my depression became overwhelming and I was forced to take a step back. It was too much. It was too soon.

My Heavenly Father basically told me to chill. While I still need to get back into school, I don't have to do it NOW! This is rather hard for me, seeing as how I love to learn and looked forward to getting into some classes.

Our Heavenly Father knows us so well. He knows what we can handle, He knows what we can't. He has promised to never put more on our shoulders than we can carry. Too bad it doesn't stop us from doing the same to ourselves.

I'm notorious for not being able to say no. I'm a people pleaser and want so very much to help others, to make them happy. While in many ways this is an admirable trait, it can also lead me into turbulant waters, and I constantly find myself drowning in an ocean of good intentions. Over the years I've not only had to learn to (occasionally) say no, but I've had to learn it's okay to be listless every once in a while.

Once I decided school was not meant to happen immediately I felt a great weight taken from me, but it's left me with an awful lot of free time. This was my own doing, thinking I'd be filling it up with studying and homework and whatnot. So I've had to figure out what to do with this time.

Here's what I've discovered: sometimes Heavenly Father gives us the gift of time so that we might do things we normally couldn't get to. I've focused more on my children in the last month than I did all summer. I've been reading a lot of serious books that have been shelved for months now, because I didn't have the time or the brain power to read them. I was able to go through the kids' rooms and started throwing things out (soooo much easier to do when they're at school and can't see the horror!). I've even read a few books just for the pleasure.

I'm back to creative writing, which I've put on hold with this blog as well as the blog with LDS Blogs. It took a few challenges at Faith Writer's, but I've also discovered something else - I don't want to write to win any more. I want to write for the sake of bringing about stories and poems others can enjoy. I've even been toying with the idea of a blog for this express purpose, to share with others my creative side. I think this could certainly fill up some of my extra hours.

So here's my challenge to all of you who are struggling to fill in unexpected free time. Look for something you've been meaning to do for a long time, have wanted to do for a long time, or have thought about starting up, AND DO IT! Don't worry if it seems silly, or useless, or isn't something others are interested in. Have some fun. Do something that's just for you. Be grateful for the gift you've been given. If you're not sure how to handle the extra time pray for what your Heavenly Father would ask you to do with it.

Odds are if He's given you the gift, He has a purpose behind it.

1 comment:

Cynthia said...

Thanks Laurie for sharing this. It's great to hear about your exeperience of wanting to start school again. It sounds like you have a lot of free time...I wish I had more.
Is there anything currently to read that you've written? I enjoy it.