I’ve been meaning to write this post for a long time, but I’ve been too busy trying to tackle too many things. So many tasks have been needed to be completed simultaneously and I have often lacked the knowledge of where to start.

Tonight Phil and most of the children are out at a fireworks party and for the first time in as long as I can remember I am alone for more than 5 minutes, and I know I am very unlikely to be disturbed for a good while. It’s taken a couple of hours of sweeping up, eating snacks and drinking tea, but I think I’m beginning to wind down. I’ve only got an hour left and I could choose between writing a blog or washing my hair but blogging wins as it is much easier for me to think and write when I’m on my own. Silence is my friend and one I often miss.

The last blog I wrote was weeks ago and I’m sorry I haven’t had chance to update the blog more often, but life got in the way, as it has a habit of doing. So what have we been up to, and what’s this about eating an elephant?

We’ve been living without a proper kitchen for a couple of months, which has been tough. I’ve found my day consumed with walking back and forth to the utility room with washing up. Why haven’t I made the children do the washing up you may ask? Sometimes I have, but sometimes the draw of a quiet room and a repetitive task, which doesn’t argue back, has just been too appealing 😉. It’s been worth it in terms of the beautiful kitchen we now have, but I have struggled with the noise and lack of space to take five.

With so many tradespeople in the house the noise level has been consistently high and my introverted side has been crying out for some space. Praise God for tonight’s silent offering, perhaps it’s something I need to find a way to achieve more often?

There have been so many decisions to make, all whilst listening to the background drone of drills, radios and banging along with the children’s needs ringing out in my ears. We’ve had to choose rendering colour, floor tiles for the kitchen, bathroom wall tiles, bathroom flooring, splash back designs, front door and internal door designs, carpet colours, wall paint colour, new to us (Facebook Marketplace) furniture, soft furnishings…..the list goes on. Thankfully we’ve made no really awful decisions, more by grace than anything else, as we have made all our choices at speed.

The house has been fully insulated and rendered in the last month. This involved weeks of banging, as the insulation was attached the the walls. It does look beautiful, although it is still hidden under a layer of scaffolding as we are waiting for the roofer to come and repair a section of the roof.

So back to the metaphorical elephant I’m trying to eat. I guess I’m learning that one can only take on any task bit by bit and not to look too hard at the overwhelming size of the tasks. The trouble is I’m a visionary thinker, I always see the bigger picture, it’s in my DNA. This ability is a gift from God, and in part why we are living this extraordinary life, but it’s also a weakness, unless I use the gift in the Lord’s strength.

Sometimes I see too much, I see the pain behind people’s eyes (and I want to fix it), I see the future playing out (it often doesn’t look good, apart from the Heaven part), I see the potential problems we might face and I don’t have broad enough shoulders to carry the weight. If silence has been hard to come by I find those burdens weigh me down, as my time alone with God gets harder to carve out.

Until tonight I don’t think I could pin down why I’ve been struggling of late, but in writing and silence I often discover what is buried within. My elephant’s already looking smaller, I think I might just have it in me to tackle one small task, maybe I’ll squeeze in that hair wash before the tribe descends 🙂.

‘And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.’ Mark 1:35. Even Jesus needed to be alone with his Father. If he needed it then I need it all the more. Trouble is, I don’t like mornings, I guess I’ll pray about that one and ask God to help me find my time with him.

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