I’m feeling God calling me to declutter. Not so much a decluttering of material items (although I will be doing a bit of that) but more so a decluttering of information, pursuits, and time wasting habits.
I am an information glutton! I didn’t even know there was such a thing until I read Women Living Well by Courtney Joseph. I could read non-fiction books, magazines, or blogs all day long and be as happy as ever. But being a mom doesn’t really allow that, and when I try to squeeze more in, things aren’t pretty. I’ve also started listening to podcasts, books on tape, or watching documentaries to fill silence and keep my brain busy. But it’s all become noise. Noise, noise, noise. I’ve allowed myself to have a constant white noise machine flowing in my head to fill the silent moments where God may be trying to speak to me! I will even have the TV on in the background just for the low grumbling sound of whatever is on to fill the silence during what should be a relaxing activity such as reading, cooking, or editing pictures. So I’m turning it all off, shutting it all down. I’m going to sit in that silence and see what awaits. I think I also pursue so much information for vain purposes or as a way to try and derive my worth but that’s a whole other post for another day.
I was listening to a podcast the other day by Christine Caine (typical me!). Anyways, she said something that I will butcher in the paraphrasing but the bottom line was this- we must let go of some pursuits that look good, to be able to grasp hold of ones that are greater, ones that only we can fill the void for; we must let go of the good, for God. I’ve felt this particular call for quite a while, but I haven’t taken the action I know I should. So here it goes. I won’t be pursuing my photography business for the next year. I still see it in my future but it is not the season for it now. I have one wedding on the books, which I am thoroughly excited about since that is where my true heart lies in photography but that will be it. Phew! That feels like a huge weight has been lifted right there! I also won’t be pursuing any kind of “higher education”. I thought I might but after really checking in with God and what my motives were for a degree, I don’t think I’m ready for that. I’ve always looked to the degree as a validation of my worth, my competence, my self-esteem but that’s completely wrong. I should be looking to God for those things and in pursuing Him those attributes will be built, not by pursuing a piece of paper to glorify myself. I have nothing against college grads, I can’t wait to be one honestly, but this is my own personal struggle and misplaced motives here. I think that’s why I’ve been blocked from finishing for so long.
Finally, we all have them. Those time wasting habits that fill empty slots through out our day. I personally find myself scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed during those times. Not even actively engaging with people but just aimlessly scrolling. Even when I’ve seen it all before, I still go back to see what I missed. It’s such a sad confession. I have become much better about it the past month or so, but I felt myself slipping back today, and it wasn’t fun. I’m so thankful to God I was able to catch myself, shut it down, and hide the phone for a few hours. I’m going on a Facebook diet of an hour a day. I’ve committed to groups that do build me up and have wonderful friendships that I can only correspond with through Facebook so it can’t be completely cut, but it will be drastically reduced. The last time I cut back, I made a rule for myself about no Facebook-ing on my phone or iPad, only on the desktop and that helped tremendously! I wasn’t constantly tempted and distracted by a device, and sitting down at the desktop allowed me to focus on the people and groups I was connecting with so much more!
What information feeds, pursuits, or habits do you feel called to cut back on? What are some ideas or callings for what you’ll be filling them with?