One not-so-fine day I woke up to catch my computer deleting all my photos. One by one, gone. Y’all. That’s a stinkin’ sinking feeling. My son’s birthday party? POOF! My daughter’s graduation? GOODBYE! Our family’s Christmas brunch from last year? DELETED!
I knew I should have heeded the warnings, but alas, I’m not good at slowing down for preventative maintenance like that. If I can stuff more in and keep going, I will.
My computer had been telling me my startup disk was full for ages, but I was “too busy” to figure out what I needed to do about it. Hitting OK to get that pesky error message to go away allowed me to get back to all the more pressing things on my to-do list.
Procrastination is my middle name.
While I thought that postponing clearing out that overloaded startup disk until a more convenient season would buy me more time, it didn’t. It just complicated my life and stressed me out later on. You always pay extra for procrastination. I hoped that simply shutting my computer down for the night would solve all its problems. It didn’t. The next morning all I saw when I opened my computer was a white screen where my photos should have been.
In my panic to restore everything, I pushed all the buttons, and googled “SOS! WHITE SCREEN OF DEATH!” like a crazy woman. I was hoping beyond all hope that some really smart guy at Google would offer me the right answers.
When the solutions felt too complicated for my non-techie brain, I sat down in defeat to eat some chocolate.
Nothing helped (well, the chocolate helped me a little, but it didn’t bring my photos back).
As a blogger, the worst possible business move is to lose all your photos. As a mom, you are supposed to protect every single memory stored in that computer. Potentially losing your son’s first day of school photos because you were too busy to delete old files or empty your computer’s trash bin is almost an unthinkable parental mistake. I was feeling all the guilt and all the stress.
Fortunately, this disaster ended well, offering me more than just a restored computer. After finally taking the time to free up space on the startup disk, my photos miraculously returned safe and sound. BLESS! But even more than the relief of seeing my life and loves once again flash before me on the screen, the calamity hit me in the head with a not-so-subtle reminder I needed to hear.
God is good at keeping me in check.
Just like I needed to heed the early warnings to free up start-up disk space on my computer to avoid calamity, I must get better at building intentionally clear space into my day. I’m a doer. I thrive when I’m busy checking things off my list and doing as much as possible, until it all crashes in around me.
My soul craves slowing down and paring down to simply be, no amount of “doing” will ever satisfy. I need that quiet time, that freed up space to re-focus, re-boot, recharge, and rejuvenate my life and my soul.
Freeing up more space to BE is my challenge to myself this summer. Might it be yours, too? Let’s make it happen.
As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for You, my God.
Psalm 42:1 (NIV)
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