It’s something I’ve been piecing together for many months now about the state of my own mental and spiritual health (SO not a fixed state), and about the way I’ve been living.
And it was something so outside of me that I will attempt to put to words that revealed to me what it is that has been a struggle of late. It’s a struggle, I think, that much of our Western, social-media-absorbing, iPhone-adjusted generation deals with.
Last Saturday, the day after my fiancee Johnny headed back to the next province over for his final year of university, after a glorious month of time together, I didn’t necessarily go into work consciously expecting a wonderful day. After chatting on the phone with Johnny, though, and already feeling more uplifted just by his kind, familiar voice, my favourite voice, I headed out to work, and ran into my co-worker on the walk over. Will is one of those friends who doesn’t let a shift just be a shift. He starts conversation, he’s so curious about everything, and he has such strong passions. He humbly doesn’t let a shift just be about tasks, but communicates with his staff.
This is my natural personality, too, I’d like to think. It’s also the joy of Christian person, I think. But, recently, my brain has been so hyper-focused on an overwhelming amount of tasks on to-do lists that it has traded compassion for check-marks, and selflessness for just-getting-stuff-done.
That kind of exhausting mindset, though, has also led me to more moments spent scrolling on Instagram than I care to admit, and less productivity than could possibly satisfy such all-or-nothing thinking.
Will saw me that day. He saw ME, as a person, and met me where I was, caring about nothing but doing his job well, and interacting with me as his co-worker and friend. And when my mind wanted to wander to tasks, Jesus Himself stopped that mind in its tracks and prompted me to meet Will, and all my customers, with the same genuine care.
And so that morning, to start off the shift, Will exclaimed “I’m so excited for today because I’m makin us the best breakfast.”
And breakfast was HAD. Will’s kindness inspired so many of my customer interactions, as well as our conversations throughout the whole day, which were anything but surface level as we worked.
Eating the breakfast without asking questions like, “what oil did you use on these eggs,” or “how many potatoes is this?” Is still enough to make me smile. Read about the freedom I’ve experienced from disordered eating here.
And, after work, I had a healing, timely, and uplifting conversation with my parents that I don’t think I will ever forget.
Death to anxious thoughts that want to keep me from speaking for fear of saying the wrong thing. And I pray for Jesus’ mouth and words of which there is no anxiety and simply endless love.
And, may I be expectant that each day would be great because of what JESUS is going to do in fulfilling His promise, and being Himself in our broken world. Nothing of us, and all of Him.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9not by works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9