The other day I went on a walk around the lake...first in a long time...and I was so taken by the beauty of where I live that I had to sit down on a park bench and cry. I stared with wonder in the direction of the Rockies, let the breeze dry my tears, and I let God tell me once again how much He loves me.
Would that all my free time could be filled with something like that!
But this brings me to my point: What is the best way to spend my free time? Should I be worried that I'm not out helping orphans and widows? Is it selfish of me to sit and watch Gilmore Girls when I could be doing something more productive?
I remember in college my best friend Sam read this book by Moody (I think it was) that was saying we really need to watch how idle we are. He asserted that the question in our minds at ALL TIMES should be, "Is this promoting God and His kingdom?" I remember being so paralyzed by that statement...I felt like a horrible person; for about a week afterward I couldn't really do anything at all. I think I even pulled away from God and got scared out of my mind that I was living a life that was completely useless in the grand scheme of things.
After that I just said, "Screw it! I'm not perfect, I'm relying on grace." I refused to be incapacitated by the feeling of uselessness, because the truth is we don't really know how useful we are in the big picture sense.
There are things that are unwise to do with my time, sure. But I think that it is perfectly OK to sit down and sip a cup of tea and not think to myself, "How is this advancing God and His kingdom?". I can sometimes just be like the mountains, the lake, the birds in the trees; I can just be. I can be in the presence of God and not worry that I am taking a little rest. I have a necklace around my neck with a heart pendant that has the words "Be Still" inscribed in it. Maybe I should listen to my jewelry more often!