We live in an age that pushes productivity. Maximize efficiency, cross things off the to-do list, and realize your full potential: these are all are key goals of modern life.
Productivity is a good thing. The Proverbs 31 woman accomplished an incredible amount (though I believe her portrait is of a lifetime, not a single day.)
Sometimes though, productivity is so much in the spotlight, that we forget that God desires fruitfulness much, much more than a checked off to-do list.
Sometimes fruitfulness and efficiency walk hand-in-hand. Sometimes though, the fruitfulness God is working into our lives demands that we set the to-do list aside for a while.
That we love our children by letting them “help” make cookies in the freshly mopped kitchen. (Not that mine’s been freshly mopped in a while.)
That we choose joy when little people demand attention just as we gain momentum on a project.
That we practice patience when the one simple thing we really, really want done on the to-do list gets trumped day after day by our calling as wives or moms.
It may not be orderly anymore, but at least there’s lots of green, right?
Before Edmund came, the kids and I attempted to tame the garden jungle and I had to laugh at my planning. Only two of the eight cucumber seedlings survived, but they had way outgrown the cages that were supposed to contain them. You could hardly even find the cages beneath the dense cover of green. The tomatoes hit the top of their trellis and didn’t get the memo that it was time to stop growing. Their tops curved down and around and are in danger of toppling over completely.
It was such a striking example of life: our efficient pretty plans get completely overrun and we have to choose between embracing the fruitfulness or trying to push everything back into the neat little boxes we’ve assigned for them.
Efficiency is often a good thing, but sometimes we need to set it aside and embrace the mess of fruitfulness.