If you have kids, or have raised kids, or have known someone who has kids, you know that if you want to get anything done for yourself, the best time to do it is usually before they wake up in the morning or after they go to bed.
So that was my plan the other morning. I woke up about an hour earlier, spent some time in prayer, fixed my coffee, grabbed my laptop and sat down like somebody who was going to get some work done.
As I sat down, I heard a little commotion out back in the chicken house. I peeked out the window and saw that the chickens had knocked over their food and water containers. In our household we know that that is their way of telling us that they are out of food and water. Me being the mother that I am, I can’t bear to let a living being go hungry or thirsty for too long. So, I put on my shoes and ran outside to feed the chickens “real quick.”
How many of y’all know the whole “real quick” thing didn’t work out? 🙋🏽♀️
As soon as I opened the door, one of the chickens, Piper, ran past my legs and headed toward the garden. (I can’t really tell which chicken is which, but whichever one is being bad at the time is always Piper – I think it’s the same chicken every time). I immediately knew that I wasn’t going to be drinking hot coffee that morning. I closed the door (or so I thought) and tried to figure out how I’d get Piper back into the house as quickly as possible. Soon enough the door to the chicken house opened and another chicken had broken loose. At that point, I threw up my hands and started weeding the garden while all four of the chickens ran around nibbling on insects and leaves.
In the past I would’ve spent 30 minutes to an hour running around and yelling after the chickens – trying to force them back into the house. I probably would’ve scared one of them (Piper) into flying on top of the chicken house or called my husband outside to help me corner them back in – taking away his precious morning time as well. But I’ve learned that if I just let them run around for a bit while I work in the garden, they usually end up going back inside the house on their own. And, in much less time than it would’ve taken me to corral them in myself.
When you think of it, life, in general, is like that too. When things don’t go our way, we tend to fight against the situation, trying to end it as quickly as possible. We work and resist, trying to fix the uncomfortable or painful situation, but we end up prolonging the process, making it take much longer than necessary to accomplish our goal. There is a saying that what we resist, persists. The harder that we fight against something, the longer it remains. What if instead of fighting when faced with adversity, we allowed ourselves to be present in the moment, acknowledge that we are in the situation, and focus our attention on the outcome we desire instead of the one we do not want. Perhaps then the solution will come to us, or the situation will work itself out.
That’s what happened to me with our chickens the other morning. Instead of fighting and stressing myself out trying to get them back into the house, I turned my attention to working in the garden, knowing that they’d go back inside eventually. Soon enough I noticed one chicken walk into the house to get water and two others followed suit. Piper, of course, remained unphased and continued picking around the garden, but it didn’t take much to shoo her back in after the others.
As you go about your day today, practice this in your own life. When you find yourself resisting against something that you do not desire, take a moment to reflect on the situation, whisper a prayer, consider and observe it without getting upset and see what comes to mind. You may be surprised and find that your solution is right there waiting for you.