a short list of yeses.

intention

On a Sunday night I scroll through the Publix sale items listed online. My planner and a journal and my Bible and my Bible Study and one of my favorite books surround me. I have two sharpened pencils and I’ve filled out my calendar on my phone down to the fifteen minutes it will probably take me to unload the groceries tomorrow morning.

Monday’s freshness is creeping in at the edges of my weekend. I used to dread Monday, the signal of lazy mornings and hours unscheduled coming to an end. She has become something more to me now. Monday, with her fresh sunrise, is unsaddled by the dinner I burnt on Wednesday or the way I lost a bit of my temper during homework time on Tuesday at 3:45. Monday is stretched out all squeaky clean and full of energy that will fade in pieces as the week presses on. I’m falling in love with her.

It’s been four weeks since school started and the pieces of my day changed shape. And that’s exactly what I’ve decided to view this new season as: a table full of wonky shaped pieces that fit together somehow. All of the sides have changed in some way. I’ve left the pieces all sprawled out on the table for a bit, just trying to get to know them. It’s true that I don’t often think in straight lines and that means that I sometimes struggle with the forethought of intention. I’m not a strategizer. I’m more the mush it all together and see if something sticks type.

I’ve wasted time. I’ve rested. I’ve worked my fingers hard. I’ve painted my bathroom white. I’ve gotten caught up on laundry only to fall behind again in the span of two days. I’ve cleaned out the freezer and seen it filled up again by my hunter-gatherer husband. And I’ve just let the pieces sit spread edge to edge as I’ve waited to fully see what I want to say yes to this year while I’ve tried to quiet my little hamster wheel where I go to think about outside expectations.

Last week, I made a list. I’m going to list it here because this is the kind of thing I always want to hear from other people. These are my yeses, the things I want to protect week to week by saying no to other good but not best things.

1. Teaching. I’ll keep offering classes through the Influence Network and lead some writerly types in a workshop at their conference. And! Four weeks ago I began a new and sweet season with teaching. I’ll be teaching some college women on Sunday mornings. We’re studying Galatians. Which is coinciding with some swimming in the deep end of Grace for me. Honestly, this little yes is just as much about learning and studying and I love it very much.

2. Writing. Sometimes I have big dreams here. Sometimes I chicken out. Sometimes I just want to get two posts up a week on this little blog but that seems impossible. This yes is taking a good bit of creativity in my routine as I figure out how to change some long standing rhythms. I want to invite the life-giving of words on paper into my daily life consistently. And I want to challenge myself. You are welcome for the vagary.

3. Community. There’s so much I could say here but the bottom line is I need to be around my people. They pepper so many corners of my life and I want to be knowing them this year. This yes will take wisdom as I figure out just how much community this introvert can balance.

4. Keeping my home. I’m the least inclined in this direction. I love to make a home. I avoid keeping it orderly with fervor. But my family people need some order and peace and I want to give that to them. This is a yes that will call on any discipline hidden away in my heart. My goal is to pursue a quietness and comfort that covers all of us sweetly.

5. My health. I’m taking more of a whole body approach here including bed times and washing my face and exercise. I’ll share more on Thursday! Jessi has her whole ladies post up today!

These are my yeses. I won’t be very good at color coding them or alotting specific times that will never change. I’ll probably let a few days slip by with my calendar empty (I went three weeks this summer without even opening it). My hope is that they will begin to form a rhythm in my heart that will continue despite the amount of regiment I stick to.

EDIT: And just because I’m curious, what are your yeses? I’d love to know!

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4 thoughts on “a short list of yeses.

  1. These are so good. Numbers four & five are things I struggle with, but know that they are & will be most beneficial to my family if I surrender and work hard at them. I love a nice home, but love keeping our home nice as much as I like a cold shower. I’m so easily distracted that anything else keeps me from keeping home.

  2. So looking forward to attending your writing workshop at Influence!!! Need to reevaluate my yeses this fall. Currently: giving my creative very-best at my full-time job; having fun with my husband; actually cooking good food; spending time with friends and family; and working strategically hard in my on-the-side photography work. Running, gardening, writing, volunteering, and home-keeping fall by the wayside right now, which I don’t like, but seems necessary.

  3. Love your list and your heart on this. I’m with you on #3 and #4. As a homeschooling introvert that also teaches outside the home and is a pastor’s wife community is a tricky, exhausting thing. I need consistency and balance though. Also with #4 I love love love what you said about pursuing quietness and comfort that cover y’all quietly. Yes!

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