Every now and again I get bit by the “can do” spirit bug. This affliction allows me to take on tasks normally well beyond my skill set or interests. For example, earlier this month I decided I could take care of our yard’s mulch needs all on my own. Yep, I morphed into “mighty yard lady” and attacked this endeavor with adrenalin filled enthusiasm.
I drove to Lowes and strode into the lawn area like I knew what I was doing. I surveyed the various mulch choices, who knew there were so many? I lugged 8 large bags onto a cart and out to my car. I put the top of my little convertible VW bug in the down position and loaded the back and front seats, the trunk would hold 1 to 2 bags. Once home, I began to fill the mulch beds and soon realized I would need more, a lot more. The day would eventually result in 3 total trips to the store, a max capacity of 12 bags stuffed in my VW bug at a time, and numerous hours of pushing, raking and spreading the mulch. As the sun began to set I barely noticed the ache in my muscles. I was so invigorated with my achievement; I was determined to repeat this day’s effort the following day. But, as is often the case, my “can do” spirit did not last as long as the project.
Early the next day I surveyed my handiwork with a reduced sense of pride and an increased sense of hopelessness. The strong nightly wind had scattered tons of plant debris over my yard. The once clean, dark mulch looked as if someone had tossed buckets of popcorn all over it. In the brighter light of the morning I looked closer at the remaining area to be filled with mulch. It will require AT LEAST the same 3 trips to Lowes and maybe twice as many bags. Sigh…I could feel my enthusiasm slipping. The impending rain shower was enough to wash any remaining “mighty yard Lady” resolve away.
So…for the last week and a half my yard has taunted me with its unfinished mulch beds. As I walked to the mailbox today I couldn’t help but notice the tiny weeds already trying to win back the mulched areas.
I wish I could say my recent yard work effort was the only example I had of times when my “can do” spirit did not last as long as a project, but that would not be true. In so many ways and areas of my life I tackle goals or relationships with a relatively short lived “can do” spirit. I may be quick to throw my energy, emotions, and effort into a project or relationship, but eventually I become less enthusiastic or inattentive.
I must admit my unfinished landscape has me thinking about other things in my life I have left undone. House and yard projects abound and I am without excuse for not giving them attention. More importantly, I have a long list of phone calls to be made. There are family members I meant to keep in touch with, new people I’ve met but have not spent time getting to know, reconnecting with friends, hurting hearts I meant to encourage, apologies I have put off and opportunities to serve I need to accept.
I know I can never accomplish anything set before me if I rely on my own, fleeting, “can do” spirit, but I have a God, who through the Holy Spirit, can sustain my efforts. When I am weak and lacking ability, it will be His strength that accomplishes all and brings glory to Him!
“…My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly in weakness, so that Christ’s power may rest on me…for when I am weak, then I am strong.” (II Cor. 12:9-10)
This is my prayer, that God will grant me the wisdom to know which tasks He has set before me, and the “can do” spirit needed to accomplish them.
Oh, good grief. I was shocked that I had somehow missed last week…until I read it. It’s perfectly timed for my today.
For me, I need to search out the God Things and let the rest go without guilt. I need to rest in Him (er, while I’m working) and let the clutter go to the wayside while I focus my energy on what is truly important.