By Susan A.J. Lyttek
This past summer events occurred and piled up that often had me stressed or panicked or both. Some of these included getting my eldest ready to move out on his own, my youngest preparing to start college classes (locally, thankfully!) and my re-entering the workforce after eighteen years as a homeschool mom and freelancer. Add in unfortunate monetary surprises like being vandalized or last minute fees for one of our offspring and you get an idea of why I prowled the house sleepless many nights.
But this did not stop my daily household obligations and writing commitments. In spite of the fact that life felt totally out of control, the calendar marched on and due dates (including this post) appeared on the horizon. So what can you do when events and seasons of life turn your world into chaos?
- Recognize that God has not left his throne. I know that I am a perfectionist and someone who likes to control my own little sphere. But the fact is that I can’t be perfect (though God will perfect me one day) and I have no control over the people and things that surround me. Wanting that control, frankly, is sin. God uses events to remind me to depend on him, not myself.
- Time is time. Use the moments you have. If you can’t sleep, pray. If you still can’t sleep, read the Bible or something comforting. If you still can’t sleep, write. Write whatever is on your mind, whether or not it relates to a current project. As far as daytime moments, look for wasted pockets of time. Use them! However, don’t try to complete a project or a chapter all at one go on a frantically busy day. If you have ten open minutes to write, write. Those snippets of time will add up and projects will get done.
- Pray, pray and then pray some more. I’ve alluded to it in the earlier passages. In the times when minutes are precious, only divine help will make those minutes do what is needed. God controls and invented time. Give it into his control and commit it to him daily, moment by moment. He will amaze you by making certain you accomplish that what he needs done. Some items will fall off your schedule in the process. Accept that he didn’t need you to do those tasks.
- Allow time to be. It seems counterintuitive, but the more stressful and chaotic, the more we need quiet moments apart from the world. These times, even if just five or ten minutes, allow our mind, soul and spirit to reweave their frayed edges.
Into every life, seasons of change and chaos fall. Sometimes God will use these times to ask you to forego writing and work for a while. But when he doesn’t, these steps will help you walk through to the other side.
Susan A. J. Lyttek, author of kids’ comedy, Guzzy Goofball and the Homeschool Play from Outer Space writes near our nation’s capital. She enjoys teaching the next generation of writers through WriteAtHome. Find out more about her projects and upcoming books at sajlyttek.com.