Monday, September 9, 2019

In Pursuit of Pleasure - Making Time For The Things That Bring You Joy

Today I have a fun little printable to guide you in thinking through how would you spend an afternoon up to an entire weekend devoted to nothing but the things that bring you pleasure!

But first, I know what you're thinking, "Kim, I simply don't have the time!", and I get that.  I'm no different than you, and there are definitely weeks, even seasons when finding time for pleasure seems to elude me.  But here's what I've discovered.  Finding time for the things that are important to us is not about a lack of time, but about how we manage it.  AND, the more importantly, there is nothing wrong for making time, no matter how small, for ourselves and for the things that bring us joy, regardless of what phase of life you are in.

Self-care is a popular movement right now, and there are just as many popular and not-so-popular opinions regarding it.  Personally, I don't have a problem with it, and in fact, support it, but as with everything in life, it's all about balance.  I am definitely not condoning making self-care your number one priority.

That being said, as with everything in life I look to Jesus as the example, and scripture is clear that even he was intentional about making time for Himself.  In the fourth chapter of Mark we read about Jesus speaking to a large crowd of people, which based upon the number of parables that scripture reveals he shared with them, indicates that He probably spoke for some time.  And then in verse 35 we read these words:

"That day when evening came, He said to His disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took Him along, just as He was, in the boat. There were also other boats with Him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”

He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.

He said to His disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”"

And while scripture does not reveal what He did next, my guess is, He probably laid back down went to sleep. And then in the next chapter, we read that He delivered a demon possessed man, raised a young girl from the dead, and healed a sick woman  back to the duties and call of life, but only AFTER having made time for rest a priority. No doubt He knew that these people were waiting, vs. 24 says "a large crowd pressed against him".  They sought deliverance, healing and relief, and yet before he attended to their needs, He took time to rest.

With that, would it not make sense that if the Son of God set aside time for rest, that we likewise should do the same?  Maybe for you, like Jesus, that means taking a nap, and while napping is the only indication of "self-care" that Jesus engaged in, it makes sense to me that He engaged in other activities that restored, refreshed and brought rest to His soul, or at the very least, that He would not condemn anyone for doing so. Setting aside time for rest has been a biblical mandate since creation, when God established the practice of setting aside a day of rest. (Genesis 2:2).  After six days of creation, God rested, and likewise, in the midst of teaching and healing the crowds who gathered, Jesus did, likewise, as should we.

But elevating ourselves from the guilt of making time for rest and restoration is just the first step, knowing what to do with that time, is another.  How many times have found yourself, perhaps unexpectedly with a bit of free time, and found yourself asking, "Now what do I do?".  Perhaps your plans were cancelled and now you have the evening free to do as you please, and how many times, unless you are intentional, do you then fill those hours doing things that need to be done instead of things that bring you pleasure and rest?  And don't get me wrong, if you've fallen behind on some things and getting caught up is what sets your soul at rest, then I completely support that!  I've done it myself!  But, I would encourage you not to let that become a habit!  Some things can wait, and they should.

That's why I developed this worksheet, to help you (me), to be set aside some time to think through how we would spend an unexpected pocket of time, or better yet, to become intentional about creating margins of time in our lives to pursue pleasure.  Having the time is the first step, but knowing how to spend that time in a way that leaves us feeling nourished and refreshed, is equally as important! So click on the link below and download a copy for yourself!

Making Time For Things That Bring You Joy

I hope that you will find this tool useful, and if you do download a copy and use it, I'd love to hear how you spent the time you set aside just for you!  Pleasure looks different for all of us, so there's really no wrong way of doing this, so do what works for you!

And now I'm off!  We're leaving to go out of town to visit family for a few days, so I'm practicing what I preach here and taking a few days for pleasure!

Until then, seek joy, my friends!

No comments: