Monday, September 3, 2012

Ahhhhh September!

September is here!!!!!!!
It has always been one of my favorite months because my birthday inhabits it and it also represents the end of summer and the beginning of autumn (my favorite season). I've recently started thinking on what I was doing about 10 years ago. If we were to travel back in time I would have been living in IN, starting my first babysitting job, going into 8th grade, and spending my free time doing carefree things such as riding my bike, piano and art lessons, reading, 4-H, and enjoying the friendship's of my junior high and high school friends, Lauren, Amy and Casey.

Fast forward to now.
In the here and now I am realizing what it means to have boundaries (not the dating relationship boundaries, which Shane and I also have). My dad used to tell me all the time "Julie, you need to practice saying "no." Just look in the mirror and say "no" over and over." Of course I would always laugh when he would tell me this but as I grow older, I'm realizing more and more that he has a point, and not just a small point. I cannot be all things to all people. Life cannot be consumed with the desires of others. Yet it cannot be consumed with the desires of self either. But where's the balance? As you well know by now, I am no theologian. But I have been wondering something. What happened to having a Sabbath? What happened to having a day of rest? God's word tells us that he made the Sabbath for man not man for the Sabbath. I was in a training session with most of the Residential Life Staff that I work with and the speaker was telling us how it could be considered a sin to not care for self. Have you ever thought of the verse that says "love your neighbor as you love yourself?" Here's the questions: are you loving self? Do you run around doing so much for others that you don't do for you (and this is easy to do when working with students or people in general)? Whether it's something as simple as listening to your body in terms of stopping when you have to go to the bathroom, eating when you're hungry, getting enough sleep and water, and exercising, and refueling yourself whether through solitude, time spent with the Lord, music, art, etc.

Not only do Shane and I have a physical boundary contract but we also have a "Sabbath" contract. Wherein we both have a time frame during a specific day of the week (maybe one day we'll graduate to an entire day) where we are committing to spend time resting (and of course this could mean different things for different people). And we don't spend this time together. This past weekend was somewhat difficult in that I chose to ignore three phone calls even though I technically wasn't "busy." Here's a small list of things I enjoy doing during my alone time:

1. Walking by the beach
2. Getting a massage every couple of months
3. Reading
4. Spending time with the Lord
5. Journaling
6. Taking myself out to a nice meal
7. Movie nights

I would just like to encourage whomever is reading this to take care of yourself. If you don't, not many others will. Until next time!