I have choices. What I do with my time is my own decision. I no longer have deadlines, my day is not structured for me as it was at school and at work. If I want structure, I have to create it. That's a huge shift to make - I've been either at school or at work all day since age 4!
I could do nothing and spend every day on the couch, watching daytime TV. (Some Saturdays after a tough week's work, that's what I needed to do. Hurray for Saturday Kitchen!) That's not what I want to do. But the fact is that if I don't lead myself, if I don't put discipline into my day, then I won't have any: no one is going to check on me. That's as freeing as it is heavy with responsibility...
But it's not just (house-)work that won't happen if I don't organise myself; it's also people interaction. If I don't make the effort to reach out, put dates in the diary, and meet up with people, then I will be without people interaction all day. Again, at school or work this is ready made; with this gig, it's something I have to organise.
I can see that it would be easy to waste day after day, either on laziness or busy-ness, and miss the bigger picture: what am I here for? Is it just to keep house for my husband? That's but a small part of my work. The big picture, and the two main reasons I need to make the most of the time - my priorities, which should inform my daily structure - consists of these:
- To help my husband. This means:
- Creating a home environment where he can relax
- Praying for him and supporting him in his own walk with God
- Listening to him
- Being there for him, loving him abundantly and being a source of joy to him
- To impact this community. This means:
- Getting to know the people in my community - neighbours, members of the church - and building relationships with them
- Offering practical help where needed, when I can
- Making my home a welcoming place for all who come, where they can relax
- Living a joy filled life that shows something of God's fingerprints on it
I have a lot to learn, and practically, my current living situation is less than ideal - we're moving in less than four weeks' time (God willing) and the house is a mess, half-packed as it is, and hardly I place I feel like making a home of. But the big picture is always relevant. And that's why, if I have coffee with a new friend, I'm actually fulfilling my calling - not wasting time, but making the most of it.