(Photo Credit) This afternoon I looked at the blogs of some of the people who recently began following my blog. I was frankly surprised at who I found on the other side of those follows. Successful people, making money – a fair amount of money even – writing, blogging, marketing, or whatever else. “Honored” is not too big a word to describe how I felt as I read their “about me” posts and pondered why they had sought out my blog, liked my post, and then followed me. It seemed that in each case they were people who realized they had been blessed with much, and wanted to give back. Or rather, to give forward – to give to people who needed giving to as they had been given to when they needed giving to.
I left a comment at each blog to thank each writer for their follow and decided to return the favor with a “follow-back” for some. Today I commented on a particularly encouraging post from Andrew Hines, and found myself thanking this stranger for taking “time and heart space” to reach out and bless others – like me.
Time and heart space. The words came out of me without my having thought of them consciously. Time and heart space. What do I do with my time and heart space?
There are some things I do that take my time but are not worth my heart space. The time I kill on Facebook because I don’t want to clean the kitchen comes to mind. There are other things that are worth my time, like reaching out to contact someone I love who is making poor choices, but that I need to be careful how much heart space I allow for.
Heart space is precious, and unlike any other space. It should be given freely but wisely. When it is given to the right things, it grows to fit it, like parents experience with the birth of each child. There is never less love to go around because it needs to be divided into more sections. Rather, the love expands the heart – sometimes even painfully – to make room for everyone who needs heart space.
However, when heart space is given to the wrong things, such as greed, jealously, fear or even worry, it shrinks the heart until there is no room for anything positive or healthy. The Grinch’s heart was “two sizes too small,” and I’m sure that’s because he gave his heart space to empty things, which closed it like a vacuum over time.
Sometimes I wonder if I take enough time to think about what is taking up my heart space.
I could stand to put more prayer in my heart, more thoughts of my sister living alone at a special school for adults with learning disabilities, more ponderings about my genius 4-year-old’s future homeschool career, more concern for my baby who often has to wait too long for the attention two other children are also competing for, and more positive encouragement for my middle daughter with internal strugglings she does not yet have the power to express. I know this kind of room-making would be well worth the time – and painful stretching – necessary to make it all fit.
My kitchen, on the other hand, could use more time and less heart space.
My goal today is to clean out my heart space and plan how to use my time wisely in such a way that I have enough mental energy to spend on growing my heart for those I love and the things that matter most.
What will you do with your time and heart space today?