For those of us in education, ministry, and the performing arts (and I am in all three), September generally means our schedules are full, full, and full. My September has fulfilled that annual tradition. The main challenge that comes with multiple jobs is that each, even though part-time, requires a separate expenditure of mental energy. More often than not I go to bed with my head spinning with the details of that day’s activities and conversations, not to mention the details of those to come the next day.
Last week Wednesday was a particularly busy day mentally. I spent the morning lesson planning and practicing at home, the afternoon at Wheaton College on Artist Series business (which involved several meetings and phone calls, so lots of energy-sapping talking), and the evening on a coffee date and then a phone date – each with a friend I had not talked to for some time (more talking). Every part of the day was welcomed and successful, but still draining. As I went to bed Wednesday night, I had my two friends’ anecdotes competing with all the details of the day’s work and the anticipation of what I had planned for the next day. I also felt like I was starting to get sick. So I tossed and turned for hours.
When my alarm went off at 5:35 AM Thursday morning, I felt the tiredness. Usually a shower helps me wake up, but this day it didn’t. As I sat down in front of my bowl of cereal, I said, “Okay, God, this one’s on you.” I knew there was no way I could manage the full day ahead by myself.
Thursday ended up being an immensely satisfying and successful day to match Wednesday. Thursday is one of the days I teach at Faith Christian Academy, and though I felt tired during classes, I found myself able to deliver instruction accurately and efficiently. I even had enough energy after dinner to spend an hour or so catching up on emails and blog reading that had piled up while I was teaching. God came through and then some. I can take absolutely no credit for that day’s successes.
But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them ever sing for joy,
and spread your protection over them, that those who love your name my exult in you.
Psalm 5:11 (ESV)