My guest blogger today is more than a friend to me–she’s more like a sister. We’ve thrown baby showers and birthday parties together. We’ve shared numerous Easter and Thanksgiving dinners when our extended families were many states away. We’ve studied the Bible and discussed who knows how many Christian books in small group together. We’ve prayed together, encouraged each other, cried together, and laughed so hard together I couldn’t stand. We were even roomies at the last Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference. I don’t get to live near her now, but I’m so glad to introduce her to you so you can have a taste of what a blessing she is. While you’re at it, head on over to her blog for more! Enjoy!
Connected Not Separated
by Lyndsey Hulen
For the past couple months, I have been dealing with separation anxiety with my youngest, who just turned four last week. It pretty much happens the same way each time:
“Wyatt, we’re going to go to church. Your Sunday school class, P5, is so much fun! I wonder what you’ll learn about today. I’m sure Lily will be there. Oh, she’ll be so excited to see you.”
“Wyatt, Amber is coming over to watch you. She is looking forward to seeing you, and I just know that you’ll have the best time with her. Perhaps she’ll even swing you out on the back porch while I’m gone!”
“Wyatt, your sister and brother are here with you in childcare. Mommy is going to go work out for just a little bit. Ooh…look at the fun gym they have here. Don’t you love exploring in it?”
All of the above scenarios are usually followed by the list below:
A random gym employee popping into my Zumba class, hoping we’ll make eye contact so she won’t have to awkwardly interrupt the entire routine.
So I leave the activity that I’m attending, and I sacrifice some “me” time to tend to my little because he is sad and inconsolable. He doesn’t like that I’m not by his side, his hand in mine or him on my hip (yes, I still carry him…he only weighs 30 pounds….40 in this summer humidity).
According to WebMD, “Separation anxiety disorder is a condition in which a child becomes fearful and nervous when away from home or separated from a loved one — usually a parent or other caregiver — to whom the child is attached.”
After so many times of going through this anxiety with Wyatt, I have come to realize that while it might be challenging or frustrating in his case, it could be good when talking about our relationship with our Heavenly Father. We should be a bit nervous or even fearful when not walking closely with Jesus. So how exactly do we get separated from our anchor, Jesus Christ?
Busyness for one thing.
I have a bad case of busy. I have self-diagnosed, and it is chronic. The problem with being chronically busy is that it is mostly about the person who keeps busy. With that being said, it steers me away from my life order, which should always be the following: Christ first, my husband second, kids third, and myself last. Before all the moms huff and puff and get their panties in a bunch, yes, women do need time for themselves. My point is that my role should default to serving God and then my family. After all, Jesus came to serve others…not to be served.
Thinking back to the above scenario with my son, I must admit that I don’t get anxious or concerned about not spending time with Jesus. The busy keeps me going, and before I know it, my time with Christ is a check mark in the morning after I have “done my duty” to read a short devotional. I then move on and hop right into social media or blogging (ugh…hurts to admit this!), packing lunches, and sorting laundry. While those are important, they are not the most important. So many times I place the world in front of Jesus. He gets a place on the back burner of my life.
Romans 12:2 says: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” How many times have I read this verse without reading it…applying it?
If we are busy with the things of this world and neglect our friendship with Jesus, how can we truly be transformed? It all of a sudden becomes very easy to conform and look a lot like the person next door who isn’t a Christ follower. I increase and God decreases, which is the opposite of how it should be for Christians.
The second part of that verse talks about how if we are connected and not separated from Jesus, Christians will be able to better discern what the will of God truly is for their lives. Doing the will of God is exactly what I want to be doing.
My prayer each day is that I would be so closely connected to my Savior that we are in step with each other. I want to do the temporary of this world (insert kid activities, dates with my husband, hobbies, housework, etc.) because that is life, BUT I want to be able to be so plugged into my mission (the Great Commission) that I’m doing the temporary with eternal perspective. I want to be connected…not separated.
“The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever.” Isaiah 40:8
Lyndsey Hulen is a stay-at-home mother in Knoxville, TN, where she lives with her husband, Greg, of 14 years, and their three children, Colton (9), Josey (7), and Wyatt (3). She enjoys writing, reading, and doing Jazzercise. Lyndsey blogs at www.livinlavidalyndsey.wordpress.com. She is also a contributor for the Knoxville Moms Blog, www.knoxville.citymomsblog.com.
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