There’s a song on the radio called Just Breathe. Pearl Jam has a song by this name, but I’m talking the Johnny Diaz’ lyrics. This song sounds like it’s based on the story of Mary and Martha in which Mary finds that sitting at Jesus’ feet is best while Martha stays busy with the necessary household work. Most of the time I find sitting still anywhere is not an option unless it’s in the car line. But the words of the song strike home.
Want to make the most of the time but I feel it slip away.
I’m busy, busy, busy and it’s no surprise to see I only have time for me, me, me.
So I often ask myself what does this mean, “Just Breathe, just sit at Jesus’ feet? Practically speaking?” Because five people and myself are expecting dinner tonight, and myself is intended to cook it. Six people need clean clothes, a reasonably clean house, plans made for meals when the sitter will be here, and one small person needs perfectly irregular diaper changes at the most inconvenient times. My day is full of doing what needs to be done to take care of my people. My agenda keeps them in line, gets them where they need to be, fills their bellies, and covers them in clean clothes.
But He shows me how to take a breath, and last Wednesday it meant this…
I was cramming five activities into one time period in an effort to get to church on time. Using my perfected technique, I was grinding coffee beans in the hand held grinder so someone else wouldn’t have to do it later. Each batch takes about 60 seconds; no grinds fly, no beans bounce. I was almost done with the bag—the thrill of the nearly complete task!
But then those sweet, dreaded words, “Mama! Mama! I wanna help!” My
3 yr old son had been absorbed in some mildly destructive activity when he noticed the whir of the grinder. My heart turned a little hard, my eyes might have closed. Two suppers were still being cooked, homework was being finished, and baths were being started, but food prep for tomorrow, gathering of uniforms, my own shower, the baby’s bath, and the 3 yr old’s bath still needed to be done. Brad would be home any minute to help but…obviously I didn’t have time to let a toddler make a mess and slow me down.
Chaos calls but all you really need
is to take it in, fill your lungs
The peace of God that overcomes
Warmth and a little angst flooded my heart. I made room when he shoved his stool across the floor and up to the counter. “I’ll pour the beans babe, and you can push the button.” Because who will let him in, if I don’t? Who will validate his importance, if I don’t? Who will teach him not to spill the beans, if I don’t? Mary found that sitting in contemplation of the God of the Universe is best. This same God shows me moments of giving, not just for my family’s material needs, but for their heart needs.
We were late for church. Again this week. Embarrassing. Not because Josiah wanted to help grind the coffee, but because organization has not been my strong suit since 4th grade. When my people display their need for me to just breathe, see them, hear them, and include them they often hear, “Not now babe! We have to get ready to go!”
But sometimes the best thing is to let them in, even if it means letting the beans and grinds fly where they may.