What, I asked God, was wrong with me. Then all the worries I'd stuffed in the brain's hidden place came to the surface, one by one, accusing me, "What about the grandkids? They're probably mad at you for grounding them last weekend when they disobeyed. Don't you think you should call them?"
"You didn't call Sherry to see if she was feeling better from the flu."
"Why are you picking up more books from the library when you have two at home you haven't even finished reading yet?"
"And you haven't even found the book the kids lost that's way overdue now."
"You didn't finish the laundry, you left dirty dishes on the counter, you forgot to make the bank deposit..."
You know the drill. Life just sucks it out of us, especially when you have a big family and a lot of responsibilities.
I got through the meeting in a fog, and driving home in the chilly rain I realized I am tired. I've been pouring myself out in words on pages that don't really have a place to go yet and trying to keep the vision and stop the squeaky, whining voice saying , "Just give up and be normal."
Gary, my husband, always gets to the kitchen first in the morning and starts breakfast while I take my time "coming to life." This morning, he didn't get up. He was attacked by the flu in middle of the night.
And I still feel like a zombie.
Have to get our special-needs teenager off the bed and on the bus. Surprisingly, in the midst of this graveyard like atmosphere he is chipper and optimistic. There's a pizza party today for his special ed high school class, a leftover Valentine's party delayed by the snow day on the 14th and the whole rest of last week. He makes me smile. He's a short, dark haired, little ray of sun on a bleak morning.
He hands me a dollar and says, "Coke." He has shared one of the two dollars in his pocket with me and wants me to buy myself a Coke. He knows I'm feeling weak and spent. He always knows. He reminds me of "Radar" on the television M*A*S*H series I used to watch faithfully every week. He's one step ahead.
On to my Bible study as the school bus pulls away and the Lenten devotional our pastor gave us. It's James C. Howell's The Sanctuary for Lent 2008. Whatta ya know? It's Matthew 11:28-30, titled "Take My Yoke."
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
An oldie but goodie. Sometimes the well-worn verses get lost in the gravely, self-declared importance of our lives. The little devotional tells me this morning that, yes, we get tired and weary carrying our daily burdens around on our shoulders, but when we focus "our most zealous efforts" on the thing that's most important to us, what really matters, that feeds our soul, we're lifted out of our exhaustion.
And then I'm reminded once again...
"This one thing."
I keep coming back to that. Over and over and over. "This one thing I do."
In other words, SIMPLIFY.
Focus on what's good.
Today that would be God's love for me, his willingness to lift my burdens, and my "Radar Boy" who will get back off the bus this afternoon. I'm putting on the lighter yoke.