Hectic, busy times can be a kind of desert in our lives.
Large family, Moving, Musings, Parenting, Simplicity

A Desert of Busyness

Life gets complicated, sometimes.

First off, we did move again, so here we are in a new state. We actually left North Carolina on the very day that we traveled there last year, in an odd, unplanned coincidence. Now, we’re in the middle of all the unpacking, the tortuous paperwork, and errands involved with relocating the entire existence of ten people. Again. And I’m learning to navigate a new city. Again.

I’ve mentioned before (more than once!) that we are in the middle of a lot of transition. A major faith change from Protestant to Catholic, two cross-country moves in a year, a new job landed and lost, multiple child health issues, a new high school graduate, a house bought and now on the market out of state, and looming financial issues as a stopgap job cuts our already-tight budget in half. My two oldest are learning to drive, too. (Gulp.)

If that weren’t enough upheaval, we might not be homeschooling all the kids this year, for the first time ever. We have gradually felt more and more overwhelmed with the homeschooling, what with all the other craziness, and we’re feeling like perhaps a different path would be better for our family at this tumultuous point in our lives. And so, in a last-minute scramble, we are trying to get our 4 elementary aged kiddos into the local Catholic school, in a town we just moved to a week and a half ago. School starts next week, and they probably don’t have spots for all of them, but it’s likely that at least the younger ones will get in, and Rebecca may homeschool a while longer and enter whenever a spot opens up for her. I’m more than a little nervous, though, about how this new schedule may bring even more upheaval and busyness to our lives as we adjust. Will it be harder or easier? I don’t even know. I just think it’s the road we’re being led to.

So I have kind of found myself longing for just a little blank space in my life. My days are packed full, every minute, every day. But, as I went to bed the other night lamenting to myself about my lack of down time, rest, vacation, about my breakneck firehose life that won’t seem to let up for the last few years, I thought of the Israelites complaining in the desert.

In the desert, God was leading Israel from enslavement to the Promised Land. In between lay the desert, with all its uncertainty, privation, and discomfort. The Israelites did what we all do in such a place, of course – complain. Rebel, even. They were probably really tired and no little afraid. But God wasn’t honored in their complaints, let alone their rebellion.

This long season of nonstop busyness is, for me, a kind of desert – and not the one I’m still homesick for back in Utah, either. I don’t thrive on this kind of thing – I like to smell the roses, rock my babies, and drink tea.  I like to change the diapers, do the laundry, cook tasty things, and mind my own business. I tear up a little, actually, thinking of years past when that is exactly what I did with many of my days. Those quiet days seem so long ago. Simplicity, hygge…these are the things I thrive on.

But, I have to be present where I am. God has put me in this season, this wasteland of an over-crammed schedule and endless crisis management. I can’t change this busyness, right now; all these things I’m doing have to happen, and they have to happen now. They can’t be responsibly set aside. In this my desert, I can only be faithful each day, fulfilling the responsibilities and needs before me, keeping Jesus at the center, attending to my own care as best I can, and trusting God that His manna is on its way, and that he will make a road for our sojourn here.

How about you, reader-friends? If you are in your own desert journey, leave a comment and let me know how I can pray for you. 






18 thoughts on “A Desert of Busyness”

  1. Prayers for you in this time!
    I have an odd personality that almost thrives on handling quick changes. It’s probably why I do well in the theater world.
    I have a harder time handling the slow, not-right-now, times. The waiting times. I’m much better at handling landslides than long and slow!

    1. I love how many different personalities there are, and how we are all needed to make the world go ’round – and how God puts us where we need to be to be challenged or refreshed, depending on what we and the world around us needs!

  2. I’ve definitely been in a desert time myself, with my husband (who just turned 70) suffering from serious health problems pretty well continuously for the last 8 months (after a major move for us, too – from the western mountains of British Columbia to the eastern oceanfront in Nova Scotia!
    The Lord has been teaching me, slowly, repeatedly, over the last… I guess it’s about 10 years now, to trust in Him in all things. And to offer up my suffering to Him. It isn’t easy, but I’m getting a little better at it.
    But, like you, I long for a break! You’re in my prayers.

    1. The concept of being able to offer up our suffering was completely new to me as a convert from Protestantism. I have found a profound comfort in that over the last year.

      Prayers for you to have a time of peace and rest!

  3. Prayers for you during this time! I am a bit like Kirby, I like to think I prefer things slow, but I do thrive when our schedules are packed and I have deadlines. I hope everything works out will with the move, schools, and especially the conversion! I’ll be jumping over to some of your conversion posts now to learn more! Blessings – Jessica @telosart

    1. Ha, I’m the opposite – I like to think of myself as the one who can juggle all the things, all the time, but the reality is that I get super exhausted by that after a while. Thanks for your prayers!

  4. “God has put me in this season, this wasteland of an over-crammed schedule and endless crisis management” – He has a plan even for the desert season! Praying for you!

  5. Well, the desert experience is one I can relate to. My husband has been out of work for 2 years now, the house and cars are falling apart and my daughter’s college expenses are looming. God has definitely placed me in a season to learn and grow in trusting Him for everything. Maintaining a positive attitude and not complaining can be a challenge but one God will give the grace for.

    1. I’m sorry to hear about your trials; I do find that the difficult seasons tend to produce the most growth in faith. I hear you on house and cars, it’s so frustrating to not be able to attend to those kinds of things. Prayers for your family!

  6. I feel you! We’re expecting, building a house in a new town, starting new schools and jobs…it’s a madhouse! Solidarity.

  7. Finding sanity and restoring your spirit in the mists of chaos can be challenging. Remember this is just a season. I will be praying for you as you face all the new challenges, especially with your little one’s potentially going to Catholic school

  8. Oh, Desiree, I feel this so much. I feel like my life has been almost constantly like that for years now, and I long for the days when all I had to do was care for little children. I thought it was hard then but it seems idyllic now. These days I am perpetually busy, in high demand all the time, lurching from crisis to crisis. I love the desert metaphor. It will help me make sense of it all. In the meantime I just try to find moments of peace where I am when I can.

  9. Love this, prayers for you and your family. You put into words so beautifully what I have been feeling and thinking. Know that I was led to your words by a random thought of I should find a blog or two to read. I’m amazed by God leading me to this entry on your blog.

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