Monday, December 28, 2009

blessed quiet for my soul

I know I've mentioned how much I *heart* projects several times on my blog. I don't usually have much time for projects, but over the Thanksgiving break and now during the Christmas break, I've found I am really gravitating toward projects. I think, especially as I'm dealing with my depression, projects are a good way for me to spend my time. I don't end up wasting the day in blah and blech. I have a purpose, and I enjoy what I'm doing.

I've been meditating on Jesus' words, "Come to me..." lately, first in a devotional, and then in a song, and today I looked up the verse. "Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest," Jesus says. "I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls. Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest and relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet for your souls." Matthew 11:28 & 29.

I have certainly felt heavy-laden and overburdened lately, not just with work and school and all the stress that comes from that, but also from the depression. Some days I am laden with feelings of profound discontent, uneasiness, and agitation. So the idea of refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet is supremely attractive.

I've also had time lately: beautiful, blessed time. I finished school a few weeks ago, and Baylor has wonderful holidays. I had Wednesday through Sunday off for Thanksgiving, and I've had off work since the 23rd and don't go back until January 4th. In this time, I've done several projects, and I think some of these projects have been a way that the Lord has brought recreation and refreshment to me.

Over Thanksgiving I did several house-cleaning projects because I *wanted* to (a novel feeling!), and I felt a great sense of accomplishment. But I also found time to put together this 500-piece Thomas Kinkade puzzle, and I really enjoyed it.

The kids and I also put together a gingerbread house earlier this month. We bought a little $9 kit at Wal-Mart that had everything in it but the candy canes. It was a fun experience! Had I attempted to make everything from scratch, it would not have been a fun experience.

I also took some Christmas pictures of the kids so I could finish up my yearly calendar project for my family's Christmas presents. After two hours, which included a long break because Noah was crying because he didn't "know how to smile," I wound up using one of the very first photos (isn't that the way it goes?!?) and one where I said something like, "Just do whatever you want to get the sillies out!"

And now over the Christmas break I've made a lovely cake:

I've also spent several hours painting the girls' new window seat and my mom and I are working on a cushion for the seat. No pictures yet, but I'll share when we're done.

I'm also finding sanity and refreshment in the music of J.J. Heller. Check her out. It's good stuff.

The moral of the story? I still struggle. This morning, for example, was quite difficult. But I know where to turn for soul refreshment, and he is creative in his ministrations.


Chris said...

You need to make it perfectly clear when you post a picture of the window seat that you did it all by yourself! All I did was provide feedback.
I wish I had read this while I was still there with you so that I would have been more tuned in.
I loved hanging out with you, and miss you already!

Angela said...

First of all, good for you for naming the "thing" and fighting it. It will probably go away, but in the meantime, talk to Brooke, since she knows a little something about that, like me, but is in your neck of the woods. I wish I didn't get depressed. It's the single most frustrating thing in my life and I know I'll carry it with me all the time, even when it's not presenting itself. You might suffer from SAD like me, or it might be more situational. If it is SAD or if you think it might be, there is a lot you can do, and if you want advice let me know.
Second of all, great cake! That thing looks delicious. The gingerbread house is amazing, but the cake looks tastier. Mmm...
Also, the second picture of the kids has to be my favorite one yet. You can actually identify their personalities in that photo. Ha.

Anonymous said...
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Chris said...

I just LOVE the silly picture of the kids! It makes me smile and chuckle!


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