What one thing has God asked you to do today?
If you don't know the answer to that question then perhaps, like me, you are a little too goal-orientated and focused on achieving rather than slowing down long enough to hear from God.
Often our priorities are not God's, our 'good ideas' not ones that He's dropped into our minds. I was really convicted by a daily devotional I read today, in which the author described herself as someone who is too busy to be interrupted. Too set on being productive and 'useful', she isn't able to deal with the stress and emotions of her own life, let alone those of others.
I gulped. And then admitted to myself that she could have been describing me. So often people comment that I must be extremely busy helping others. As a pastor's wife I do get my fair share of burdened people wanting a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on and someone willing to pray with them. And I consider that a privilege.
The problem is, I have my own ideas about what I should focus my time on, which means that the hours my kids are at school are taken up with work. Of course, the majority of us have to work in order to live, so I don't feel that that's a problem. What is, though, is that niggling feeling I sometimes get. The feeling that tries to tell me I don't need to work quite so much...
I'm beginning to think that perhaps God wants me to pull back a little in order to be open to life's interruptions when someone needs a caring friend.
I have tried to be available when someone has asked me to be in recent months but, I have to say, it can create stressful moments afterwards, when I'm trying to catch up with the things I had had on my 'to do' list that day. (That doesn't create a great atmosphere for my kids when they get back from school – as a stressed mummy is a grumpy one!) I'm also beginning to wonder how many people simply view me as unavailable so they've stopped asking...
Handling the tension of wanting to be there for others and following my calling regarding work is a tricky one. But I do have a growing feeling that God could be asking me to hold my days more lightly; to be willing to be flexible when He brings people to me He'd like me to share His love with.
So I've started asking God each morning when I sit down at my desk: what is the one thing You want me to do today? Because I would hate to miss the chances I've got to interact with people He wants to bring me into contact with, if only I'd just step away from the desk.
Of course, sometimes what He wants me to do is focus on making a piece of writing I'm in the middle of the best it can be. To prayerfully consider all angles on a Bible study guide I'm putting together. Or to take some time out to hear what He wants to tell me about how to parent through a particular time in either of our kids' lives.
The point is that often I can be too busy being focused on my own 'to do' list, that I forget to check in and see if any of it marries up with what He's got on His heart for me to do.
What about you? If you slow down and listen, what is that one thing you think God is beginning to stir in your spirit for you to do today?