wp-1581112688458617850303.jpgI have lived much of my life as if I am being measured by an invisible yardstick.

Or as if someone is looking over my shoulder assessing my days with a hefty grade book in hand.

I am prone to trip over hidden measuring tools or feel these invisible judges crowding my personal space.

Sometimes the critic looks like me.

January seemed long and February will evaporate before I fully settle into the month, I wonder how many checkboxes have already remained unchecked?

If I am honest, it is not only during the first of the year when I feel the weighted stare of my silent hovering critic.

I sense its presence whenever I have skipped a day or many days of a new yoga program, reading plan or any other task beckoning to be checked off. Studies confirm the tiny high received from making checkmarks. I love it when my to-do list is covered with the ink of completion. There’s nothing wrong to feel a sense of accomplishment when finishing a task or goal.  Yet I haven’t been able to shake the belief someone is keeping score. The tallies are designed for me as well as those persistently pulsating empty boxes.

What if I could look at the checkmarks and empty boxes as not successes and failures but as evidence of a full life?

What if I didn’t equate an empty checkbox as a lack of discipline or motivation but as the result of different choices or a change in priorities within a given day?

My days can no longer be measured by subtracting unfilled boxes from checked ones.

Or submitting to an imagined taskmaster by stacking today’s unmet expectations and adding it to tomorrow.

What if I could look at the hollow between the box’s four lines and view it not as a prison of judgment but as a swollen square of grace?

More than a week of February has passed and I might only be a few days into a yoga practice started on the 1st, there is no finger-shaking allowed from a bossy judge or myself.

I won’t combine missed sessions into one super-sized one to be proven acceptable and caught up. I will simply begin again because if perfection is the only way, I might never unroll my mat.

How can you make peace with the inevitable empty checkboxes this week?

making up for lost time

making up for lost time



I have packed 3 suitcases in 4 weeks.

4 if you count Caleb’s suitcase.

It has been a month worth of trips devoted to celebration of family,

friendship and milestone birthdays.

On either side of the miles traveled,

there have been beautiful meals shared

in terrain where infant pears clung tightly to branches

and bobbing and weaving between bites as

white puffs of cottonwood  filled the

air like cotton candy.

Selfie attempts were warranted and perhaps unsuccessful.

My heart is saturated with people and  conversations

and with unblemished joy of being numbered among so many I cherish.

The sights my eyes have beheld continue to replay in my daydreams and

I marvel at the hushed utterances of such grace, such blessed and sacred


After the bags were unpacked and laundry piles began to subside,

I did what I always do.

I made a list.

A list of all that needed to be done.

You know the list I am talking about.

The list called making up for lost time.

I wanted to accomplish some chores but I also wanted

to rest up and refuel.

Caleb was away visiting his Grands so my week

could be more concentrated on the multitude of tasks before

my eyes.

Each day I crossed off an item or two.

Most mornings, I set a later alarm.

After several days,

I felt more tired than when I stowed away

my luggage.

Then I read this:

Hurry is the great enemy of spiritual life in our day.
You must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.

~Dallas Willard
(as quoted in this book)

Despite my efforts to keep my days one part productive

and the other part relaxation, my pace had been a

hurried rush.

I was trying to make up for lost time.

I live my days if I am always making up for lost time.

But what is lost time?

Would I consider a trip to see family,

lost time?

Would I ever tell a friend,

“Yes, let’s get together for coffee

even though it will mean I am losing

time according to my grand list of to-do’s” ?

No, it is called spending time with others.

It is all about adding priceless gems to our lives,

not squandering it.

There is no such thing as making up for lost time.

Time is continuous and is meant to be spent.

Making up for “lost time” is as futile as trying

to gather sand in your arms.

There is simply today and the minutes

we determine to use in the course of our day.

Seems I recall Jesus saying to let tomorrow take

care of itself.

Don’t hurry.

Don’t worry about that which remains undone.

Caleb comes home today.

(Oh how I miss that boy!)

The last few days have been different.

I have slowed down.

In case, I didn’t get the message, I also have

a troublesome knee which makes me take

each step with care and gratefulness.

So what is your hurry today?

What’s your worry?

There will never been an end to laundry and

cooking and bill paying.

There will be another weed to pull as soon as I loosen

ten roots.

I apologize for stating the facts.

As much as I dream,

I will never read every great book written.

There is today,

a gift to be used and not hoarded.

A gift to be cherished and celebrated.

Spend it well and don’t deem it as

moments that demand being redeemed later.

Simply cash in every second with sweet abandon.


photo credit: Carl Washington