For years I spent my life in hurry mode. Determined to get everything done so I could have time to rest, relax, breathe. More often than not, I kept going beyond the time when the clock said stop. My car, the last in the parking lot at school. Folding laundry after dinner. My mantra was one more thing.

This relentless pushing, striving, doing ate into my heart and soul. Never satisfied, tense, impatient. It fed my discontentment. I envied those who managed to have more time to enjoy life. And disdained them because I knew they left things unfinished.

Things I wanted to do, people I longed to enjoy, getting tacked onto my never-ending list. Even when I took time to be with people I loved, they got only part of my attention while I fretted about what I wasn’t doing, the things on my to-do list still waiting.

Needing to Pause

Once in a while, I pressed pause. Unable to keep up the frantic pace, I grabbed a book and escaped to the beach. Spent the day letting the smell of the ocean, the cries of the gulls, the warm sunshine on my back refresh my weary soul. Staring across the endless expanse of ocean, I let God refresh my soul. The world faded away, until only God and I remained.

My soul longed for that connection with God. Not just at the beach, but everywhere. All the time.

Obviously, I couldn’t stay at the beach. But I could stay connected to God. He could set my priorities.

Pause

Choosing to Pause

I surrendered my to-do list to Him. People and relationships top God’s priority list. Shouldn’t they top mine? Contentment didn’t come from a completed to-do list. It came when I willingly pressed pause, enjoying what was right in front of me. Listening to Van. Leaving a load of laundry in the washer and dirty dishes in the sink and going to lunch with a friend. Sitting on the front porch talking to my daughter, Erin, on the phone instead of trying to dust the house while we talked.

Trust me, all those chores will wait. True contentment happens when I press pause on the trivial and focus on what truly matters. Giving my full attention to people. Making memories that last.

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