Jesus · Refresh · Soul care

“ETO” – October 2021

Monday, October 4, 2021

Today I did something a little crazy.  I set my “Out Of Office” message to reflect that…well…I’m actually “OUT OF THE OFFICE”!

Not just for a day…not for the week…but for some extended time off.

Honestly, I struggled with the wording of my message…am I really going to announce that I’m taking a break for the entire month of October?  Am I going to admit that the reason is…???

Like many coworkers and people around me, I’m tired.  I’m weary. I’m struggling to experience real joy.  And while I KNOW that I need to disconnect for a bit, I’m struggling with feeling “selfish” and “wimpy”.  Others are still at their jobs plugging away…shouldn’t I just keep going?

But then I hear the words of wise friends (and my husband) that remind me that I’ve been plugging along for years…and that this October is MY time to take care of the tender parts of me that long to just rest…reload…refresh…whatever we want to call it. I need time alone, time with those that are “fillers” for me…and certainly some time with Jesus.

So- today, on “Day 4”,  I got up by 8:00am and showered, got dressed, did some laundry, unloaded the dishwasher, cleaned the junk drawer, and then headed to my home office to type an out-of-office message. After I sent a few emails (hey – I’m not DEAD), I decided to run a few random errands and mosey around Hobby Lobby for an hour…BECAUSE I COULD!

When I entered the store, I was drawn to this book on the rack by the registers.  No idea why but since my favorite book EVER is “Redeeming Love” by Francine Rivers, I was drawn to this book that appeared to be about the same size/page numbers.  I read the front and back covers and thought, “What was the last book I read just for the heck of it?  Not a ministry related book on leadership or self help…JUST A BOOK?”

I honestly couldn’t remember.

Today, I bought a book.  And thanks to the crazy “facebook shut down” (when social media went dark for most of the day), I wasn’t even tempted to see what the world was up to this afternoon!  Instead, I put my phone down(honestly, didn’t even know where it was) and spent two hours with a book in my hand…ONE THAT I PICKED! One that my fingers enjoyed holding and turning the pages.

Later this month we will be having a family wedding with friends and family joining in on the celebration.  Then Tom and I will be heading to Florida for a week of just sitting on the beach and then a weekend at a cabin in the woods with dear friends. I cannot wait for those events and the fun we will have and the memories we will make with people we love.

However, all I can think about – at 11:22pm on “Day 4”-  is getting up tomorrow and being in my empty, quiet house and turning a few more pages of “The Masterpiece”.

Day 5 – bring it. I think I’m going to love you!

#ETO <-extended time off


2 thoughts on ““ETO” – October 2021

  1. You do so much for others (be it work or family), I’m so glad to hear that you’re taking some time for yourself. And proud of you for doing it! Thanks for sharing, too. I hope and pray that your ETO is just the ticket for your physical and emotional well-being.
    Have a wonderful month! Love, Michelle


  2. Oh, girl! You bathe in that time off (not literally; I know you already do that). Bathe in God’s goodness, in His rest, in His peace, and be STILL! I am quite jealous of your chance to get to do this. I think if there was anything I enjoyed about the Big Chill of February, it was that we couldn’t go anywhere and we had quiet family time together. Yes, we were freezing our hineys off in our house, but the time of peace (other than our chattering teeth) and slowness and experiencing it together was priceless. You get that time to slow down and hopefully we won’t lose power! Love you!


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