Three Thoughts on Balancing Relationships & To-Do Lists – Part Two
Do you ever feel like you’re on a see-saw of choosing between relationships or productivity? As we lean on the Holy Spirit to teach us how to cherish our relationships, even as we complete housework, homeschooling, and other work commitments, here are three thoughts to bear in mind:
Liberation From Guilt to Love
This is the most recent and, thus far, the most profound insight the Lord is teaching me right now. Far too long were my investments in relationships motivated by guilt. Have you ever noticed the difference?
“I have to get caught up on laundry or else I’m a disaster of a housekeeper.”
“My kids would be better in daycare. I spend more time grading schoolwork than with them.”
“I’d better schedule time with my parents, just so I’ll stop feeling bad for not seeing them more.”
Love, on the other hand, says:
“I love caring for my family so much that I’m happy to do my best, so that they have clean laundry to wear.”
“I would love to spend more time reading to the children this winter. I wonder if there is a more efficient system I could use to grade their schoolwork.”
“I love my parents and sure hope this time spent with them is a ‘thank you!’ for all they are.”
Guilt is always performance-oriented, whereas love is always other-oriented. In a chapter we’ve all become dangerously immune to, 1 Corinthians 13 reveals that even if we gave our bodies to be burned for the sake of our families, it is nothing if love is not what drives us to the sacrifice. Nothing. We can give it all, do it all, and be all, but if it doesn’t well up from a heart of love, it’s nothing.
Provides Peace of Mind and Heart
Nothing drains productivity like a distraught heart. And nothing causes a distraught heart like broken relationships. We all have witnessed the destruction that years of discord can add to a person’s health. In fact, living in peace is so important to God, He listed it as one of the things that, without which, no one shall see Him (Hebrews 12).
Relationships may cost a lot, even the price tag of postponed to-do lists, but we can’t afford the bankruptcy that poor relationships bring.
Our Witness For The Lord
One of Satan’s greatest tactics is distraction. If he can get us to forget why God has us here, then he’s won the throne room in our lives. Ladies, why do we teach children – be they our own flesh and blood or of our hearts – anyway? Is it not because they are eternal souls, who will spend forever praising God or separated from Him? The next generation is one of our few avenues for influencing the world beyond the grave. Wouldn’t it be beautiful to someday stand on a heavenly stage where all the people you knew and loved are being rewarded by the Father, and take joy, knowing you played a role in their labor? Relationships are the key that make such vision a reality. And at the end of the eternal day, shouldn’t that be the purpose of both our relationships and productivity, anyway?
Kenzi Knapp is a follower of Christ, homeschool graduate and student of history. A fourth generation Missourian she enjoys writing about daily life enrolled in Gods great course of faith and His story throughout the ages at her blog, Honey Rock Hills.