I'm too young for this.
So today is Friday. Finally the end of a very busy week. I went to work early several days. I did lots of baking (pies, cake, muffins), lots of working out (pullups, back squats, bench press, rowing, kettlebell snatches) and lots of other things that just made me overwhelmed with busy-ness*. Granted, this is not a "serving your neighbor" type of busy-ness, but a totally, completely, self-centered type. I struggle with this. I love (love!) to bake, and I love the happiness it brings to others when they bite into something deliciously homemade and really... enjoy themselves. And so I bake. And bake. And bake. Which requires me to work out. And work out. And work out. :-) A pretty good balance, for all intents and purposes. Except it just seems so... typical. How many other 20-somethings are out there doing the exact same thing? Weekdays: Work. Cook. Gym. Facebook. Weekends: Church. Errands. Friends. Wash, rinse, repeat. Aren't we supposed to be doing something new and fabulous and extraordinary with our time? We singles supposedly have so much time on our hands**, shouldn't we be changing the world? A lot of the time I feel like I should be doing something more "meaningful", but then I wonder how in the world I could possibly fit anything else in my schedule. I run around like a chicken with its head cut off (sorry, queasy friends) every day, but what am I really accomplishing?
I do have to say, I believe my friendships have deepened significantly in the past year or two. I've met more new friends (and spent time getting to know them deeply) than in years past, when my brothers still lived in Idaho and I think I may have sort of followed on their coattails. Road trips and hard work and running races and going to Bible studies together will do that to you. It's wonderful. Being part of God's church means enjoying fellowship with your brothers and sisters, and that is meaningful. But isn't my free time supposed to include more than just "hanging out with my friends"? Maybe not. Maybe it depends on what kind of hanging out you do.
Recently, I was invited to help out with youth group at church. I'm 99% sure I will do it (otherwise I would not be mentioning it here!). I'm excited to be putting time into something completely worth it (friendships with other church members, those outside my usual group/age range). It's not worth it because of what I could teach the kids or what they will teach me, but because we'll be learning about the glory of God together, and his will for the church, his people; and therefore his will for all our lives. I remember being in youth group. I remember being in high school and college and a new apartment in Boise, wondering, "What is God's will for my life? What am I supposed to do after school? Where should I live? Where am I gonna get a job? What is this... this piece of paper asking me for money?! I thought light and heat were free." And I was so blessed to have adults in my life who led me to the Bible and said "This is God's will for your life. Right here..."
"Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." I Thessalonians 5:16-18
"Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will." Romans 12:1-2
"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding." Proverbs 3:5
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." Philippians 4:6
"But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have." I Peter 3:15
"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast." Ephesians 2:8,9
God doesn't save us because of all the lovely things we do for our neighbors, even though that is fruit (or evidence) of a changed heart. In fact, He doesn't save us because of anything we do, good or bad. He saves us because of who He is, and His will is good and perfect and deserving of praise. We can bring honor to Him by praising Him together. Which is what I hope to do by hanging out with my friends, all of them.
Sorry for such deep thoughts on an otherwise typically light-hearted blog. That's what you get from a 20-something who is home alone on a Friday night, trying to ignore her drunk neighbor's loud banging and strange noises. :-)
*I know busy-ness is really spelled "business", but if I spelled it the correct way, how would you all know whether I was saying it like "mind your own business" or "the day was full of business". hmm... Oh wait! I was wrong! I just look at Merriam Webster and discovered that there is a correct way to spell busy-ness. It's busyness. Heh heh... "the more you know..."
**I have never been responsible for a family, so I could be way off base here, but for several years now, I've had the opinion that singles are just as busy as marrieds, but in different ways. Sometimes it makes life even more hectic to be single, because instead of having two people to split the chores and errands and bacon-bringing, you only have one. Again, I'm sure lots of you are going to disagree with me and say "Wait til you're married!" but this is my blog so I get to have my opinion. hee!