I guess it’s not hard to tell that I’ve been busy. Normally, I post these blogs at 8, or 9 am on Monday morning. Here I am, 12 hours later, just sitting down to write my blog that I meant to post this morning. This weekend, I sat down and made a few decisions based on what my last two weeks have been like. About a week ago I ended up missing classes for a small procedure to help with some of my GI symptoms related to EDS. I wasn’t too thrilled about missing it since it was a Friday. I’m taking 18 credit hours this semester, and missing a Friday meant missing four classes and a hunter/jumper ride. But, I needed it, so I did it. I don’t regret having the procedure done, but it was at a very inconvenient time.
For some reason, I didn’t think taking 18 credit hours was a big deal. Now, for perspective, last semester I took 14 credit hours. One credit hour was a class on Thursday mornings that only met for the first five weeks of the semester. One credit hour was a riding class, which meant there was no homework and no paper tests. Basically, I was doing work for about 12 credit hours on top of writing a book and dealing with EDS. Now, I’m trying to write a book, I’m still dealing with EDS, I’m on the hunter/jumper team, I have a social life, and I’m taking 18 credit hours. This semester, I decided to get on top of my work and get a planner. So far, I have been very diligent about writing down what I have to do in my planner. Even though my classes are week to week assignments, rather than day to day, since the procedure, I have been worried about falling behind. It seems that I struggle to get anything done most days. Finally, this weekend I sat down and made a decision. My majors are Bible Theology and Youth Ministry. But I spend more time at the barn in a week than I do with anything else. As much as I love the people, and the horses, it isn’t my life.
Over the weekend, I promised myself I wouldn’t fall into the trap of busyness this week. Having gone through today, I realized that I need to learn how to say no sometimes. I went from chapel to my spirituality class, and immediately to my new testament class. From there, I went to Greek and then took a break for lunch at 2. During my lunch today, I packed up all my riding stuff, and finished just in time for my 3 pm class on Israel. As soon as that class ended, I booked it to the freshman lot on campus and made my way to the barn for practice. Fun fact: when you’re running (even though you shouldn’t be), you can’t tell that it’s snowing. The barn was freezing, and I think I rode for about 20 minutes before I had to get off, change, and book it back to campus in time for the Christian Philosophies program chili. It was after appearing at the event with a flushed face, smelling like the barn, that I realized maybe I needed a reality check. I enjoy riding horses, but it isn’t my life. It is so easy, especially in college, to get caught up in the busyness of life. I think I need to start trying to implement my plan to prioritize.
“But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, ‘Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.” – Luke 10:40
There are many scriptures that discuss what it means to be busy, but I don’t think any stories show me the distractions of this world better than this one. Jesus and his disciples were passing through Jerusalem, and they stayed with two sisters: Mary and Martha. Now, while Jesus talked, Mary sat and listened at his feet. Martha, on the other hand, is busy doing housework and preparing for dinner. She gets upset with Mary and asks Jesus to tell her to help out. Jesus’ response is recorded in Luke 10:42, “There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken from her.”
This past Sunday, a group of friends came to church with me. The pastor showed a picture of a guy on a beach, and the guy was using a metal detector to try and find ‘treasure’ on the beach. I loved what the pastor said in response to the picture. He talked about how everyone sitting on the beach that day was enjoying the beautiful treasure around them. But this man with the metal detector, he was missing the most beautiful treasure in search of something that would never be as great as the beauty of the beach itself. Mary was enjoying the real treasure; Martha was the man with the metal detector.
Sometimes, I am Mary. I see a situation so clearly, and I make the right decisions. But more often than not, I’m Martha. I’m the one who is constantly cleaning, cooking, and doing other things that cause me to miss the treasure in front of me. I let tedious things like riding horses distract me from my goals of becoming an author. I miss God’s plan for my life because I’m caught up in something so trivial. Not to say that riding horses isn’t important. People are called to do different things with their lives. However, I am not called to be a horse enthusiast. I’m called to another path. This week, my goal is to remember that.
By Your Side by Tenth Avenue North
“Why are you looking for love?
Why are you still searching as if I’m not enough?
To where will you go child?
Tell me where will you run, to where will you run?”