Wednesday, January 13, 2010


It is 12:04am.  I cannot sleep.  I was nestled in my bed, loving my warm and cozy flannel sheets, but just had to get up and blog about something God has been laying on my heart lately (plus, I had coffee ice cream at about 10pm so don't think I'll be sleeping anytime soon).

Anyway, God has been speaking to me recently about the issue of clarity.  Our pastor has been preaching on this subject the last few weeks.  He has reminded us that we need to have clarity to hear God, and know what He is calling us to do.  However, we cannot often have clarity if we're doing too many things at once.  The word hits my mind all day long.  Then tonight, in my bed, I was thinking about how this is the one time of day that I actually have clarity.  In bed at night is when I do my best thinking, because I'm only doing one thing: Resting.  Then, get this - I sat down at my computer to write this post, and my computer was freezing up because I had too many programs open.  Again, God whispered "this is what your life is like when you are doing too many things!"  I need clarity.

Sometimes I think I'm a little addicted to multi-tasking.  I love getting things done, especially at the same time.  I can multi-task when I'm cooking, having a phone conversation, sitting in church (did you know people Tweet in church?), driving (yes, I have been known to put on my makeup at the stop lights), and even when I'm in the bathroom (hey, that's when some of my best -and only- reading gets done!).   Yet it really annoys me when I'm with other people and they are multi-tasking.   Especially if I'm with them and they're using their cell phone a lot.  Annoying.  (Yet I fully know that I am guilty of that too).  Anyway, I digress.  My point is that doing a lot of things at once is not always good.  In fact, it can become bad.  It can become a habit, or worse yet, a way of life.  And pretty soon, we're so good at multi-tasking, that we cannot do one thing well anymore.  We can't have a good, focused phone conversation, because we are making dinner at the same time.  We can't have a good, in person conversation, because we're so busy checking our phones for text messages.  We can't really listen to someone, because we are multi-tasking in our heads.  Sure, we can get by, but it is not good.  It is not giving any one thing our full attention. (sorry, I really like using the italics button right now).

So, back to what God has been teaching me lately.  He has been gently reminding me to slow down.  To have clarity.  To do one thing at a time.  And let me tell you, it is hard!  I have been trying to play with my boys every day - have focused play - where I am not running back inside to check my phone, where I am not planning dinner or cleaning the kitchen.  Today we went to the park for an hour and it was actually refreshing to just focus on playing with them, and nothing else!

As I look forward to 2010, I want it to be a year of clarity for me.  I want to know what God has called me to do, and to do it well. That really comes down to two things: first and foremost, being a wife & a mother. Everything else is secondary.  That is my mission.  I don't need to feel guilty if I choose to say "no" to something that might take my attention away from my husband and my children.  That may even mean saying "no" to good (even great) opportunities.  That may mean turning our phones off during dinner.  It may mean turning my cell phone off during the day when I'm with my boys.  It may mean only getting online once or twice a day, verses 10 "really quick" times during the day (does that sound like a lot?  Because "really quick" internet checks can add up! :)

When we have clarity; when we focus on one thing at a time, I think we experience life much fuller.  We are able to have the discipline of slowing down, and it is a discipline.  And our children will remember us in 10 years as "mom" versus "busy, scatter-brained, always checking her email and phone mom."

Just one woman's thoughts.  Reminds me of a post I did awhile back where I said something like "Since when did multi-tasking become a virtue?"  Sometimes God has to speak to me for awhile about something before I really get it, so this probably won't be the last on this topic.  So, what are your thoughts on this?  How do you have clarity?  How will you have more clarity in 2010?


  1. The part of your blog that really struck me was your ability to focus on your roles of wife and mother as God's plan for you. I have struggled in the past feeling like I should be doing more, serving "outside" the home. For me, clarity, is all about listening to God and not everybody else. Thank you for your words.

  2. SO good Jaimie! I love it! I am constantly struggling for clarity and wondering if what I'm hearing is God or just my desires. You're right, in the stillness of rest is when we hear the clearest and process the best. I think we're wired to be multi-taskers, but it's not always a positive thing. I've always admired Brian's focus, but I think men are just wired THAT way :D

  3. I think God's been having the same conversation with me lately as well - paring down and focusing on what REALLY important (my family). Hope you slept like a baby after writing this post! Great job by the way.

  4. Wow Jaimie, you really hit the nail on the head with this one - I have been dealing with that same issue! When I read your part about the computer windows, I looked down at my task bar and saw 6 windows open. One of them was firefox with 8 different tabs open. You really gave me something to think about and to work on (great one more task!! LOL!).

  5. Ahhhh...time to think. You don't know how often I wish I could just blink my eyes and find myself sitting somewhere, by myself, with
    "time to think". I definitely need clarity in my life...thank you for the post. Sending you a big <> right now...wish I was sitting with you and having some "non-multitasking" (word?) time!

  6. that was supposed to be "hug" in between those...not sure what happened.

  7. Best post of 2010! Thats my vote anyway. :) I can definitely relate to this, wow. Thank you for taking the time to write this for all us multi-tasking addicts. SO enlightening! This has been on my heart lately too, giving my "full" attention to whatever I do, instead of just a % of it. Husband, Kids, listening to a friend are just a few examples of areas I need to work on.

    This is my 1st time back blogging in forever, so glad I read this! :)
    BTW, my bloggy has a NEW home now. Come check it out!