Sometimes, I get so focused on ideas, projects and action steps that I forget to simply take time out to relax and enjoy life. Sure, almost daily, I savor a squeeze from my children, am pleased by a passing kiss from my husband or smile through a family story time. But, too often, these moments seem “stolen” from the other demands of my days. Instead of taking priority, peaceful pleasures are relegated to mere minutes sprinkled here and there throughout hours of more mundane tasks. I’m not sure why this is. But, I am certain that it is something that needs changing.
Today, as I read to Luke and Nina about the Garden of Eden, it struck me how God originally created all things to be appreciated by his beloved Adam and Eve. He did not intend for beauty to be an afterthought. Indeed, he created all of the splendor of the world before making Adam and Eve so that they could enjoy it from their very first moments. Neither did God, at the outset, mean for daily work to be labored through. In fact, he surrounded Adam and Eve with a plethora of delightful things to feed, shelter and amuse themselves with. It was only as a consequence for disobeying God that labor entered the picture. And, even then, God did some of the work for Adam and Eve, fashioning them clothes of leather before expelling them from Eden.
Indeed, it seems that God originally sought to ensure that Adam and Eve might prioritize delight, and, despite the fall, asks us to as well. In Philippians, 4:8, we are reminded to focus on “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious…” Things that are excellent and worthy of praise are the things we are asked to think about. And, so, today, I have decided to do so more consistently. And, thus, Time Out Tuesdays begin.
My intent is that on Tuesdays, I will take a time out to focus on how I have relaxed or enjoyed over the course of the prior week, not for mere moments, but for an entire morning, afternoon, evening, or – with God’s grace – day. Hopefully, in doing so, not only will I increase my dedication to honoring what is excellent and praiseworthy by devoting ample to it, but will also inspire those who are reading along to do the same.
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