Monday, August 06, 2012

Living sacrifice

The much-dreaded first day back to work after vacation is behind me.  Oh boy, it's like I never left!  Can I be transparent and admit that I've been struggling with my job lately?  This causes me great frustration, I've always loved being a nurse and frankly, I've been a really good one :)   But these last several months?  Rough.  Rough enough to have me wondering if it's time to move on, go part time, do something...anything else.  Hence the hole in my belly, the constant headaches, the over-eating, the insomnia.  So this past week's vacation was not just a little break in the routine, it was some much needed medicine for my soul. 
The Lord is ever faithful to lead us in righteousness for our good and his glory, but that's easily forgotten when one is feeling overwhelmed.  In prayer this past week the Holy Spirit revealed himself to me in the fullness of his gentleness and compassion by giving me a sense of freedom to resign.  It was with this sense of freedom that I went in this morning, reminding myself that I don't have to do this anymore.  I'd like to say that when I arrived I had a new found sense of purpose and realized things weren't as dire as I felt a week ago, but no.  As I said, like I never left.
I didn't resign.  I humbled myself before God and asked him to teach me, lead me, make me into the person he wants me to be and if that person is to work in this job; all the more I will need him and all the better. 
I settled myself into my office and worked slowly through the accumulated tasks.  Slowly is an important word here, part of my self-destructive tendency is to do nothing slowly.  I talk fast, I walk fast, I think fast. I push push push and have a subconscious drive to get everything on the list done in a day.  It's much easier on the mind to work slow and steady (wins the race I've heard.)  I gave myself permission to work at a reasonable pace and leave at the end of the day satisfied with my work.  When I was informed of staff in need of counseling or redirection, I let that be their problem. The issues that is. My job is to do the counseling and correcting, not to take responsibility all the way down to my marrow for other people's errors. When people demanded my attention, I prioritized their needs against my tasks and told a few that they wouldn't be on today's schedule. I don't usually take a break but today, although I didn't take a lunch, I did stretch my legs.  Had a glass of ice water, watched the clouds from my window.  The world didn't end.
I haven't had an epiphany exactly.  But I do think that if I take myself off of auto pilot and hold fast to the wisdom that the Lord is showing me, I'll be ok after all. 
A final thought?

Romans 12: 1,2  I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

While we were on vacation, the Mr. got up every morning and read these two verses and spent time in prayer giving himself to God, seeking each day what the Lord would have of him.  I decided to do the same with no particular agenda other than it sounded like a good idea.  This, I believe, is where my spirit opened to receive what I needed so much.  Although I had never considered my work stress sin, surely this unhappiness and unhealthiness was not God's daily plan for me.  If anything, the negative impact of my job was me being conformed to the world...directly affected by and responding to my worries instead of being transformed into someone who glorifies God even in life's storms. 
When God asks us to give our bodies as a living sacrifice, it is not so that we can be crucified as martyrs by an unkind world.  It is so that we give him purposeful permission to make us new over and over again.  Every day, submitted to him I will become more like him.  Only in his shadow are my labors of any value.
In this I may prove (become evidence) of the good, acceptable and perfect hand of God on mortal flesh.
My reasonable be made new.

1 comment:

Jada's Gigi said...

Amen! a hard lesson to learn for people like us....permission to relax a slow NOT finish the list. I have learned a lot about this over the years however recently my hubby mentioned to me that I seem stressed and overwhelmed a lot lately...upon taking a step back I realized that he was right..I had again allowed myself to be chained to my own expectations...i have since cut my expectations roughly in half..I am enjoying my life again and much more relaxed....I do not wish to have ulcers and drive my loved ones away with my demands on my is too short.