On March 6th my husband, Rob, and I celebrated our 15-year wedding anniversary in San Jose del Cabo! Coming from broken homes, it is a small miracle that we’ve made it this far. Amazingly, we have been married three times longer than both of our parents combined! We had a wonderful time together and I had time to reflect on the word I was given for 2019.
Don’t get me wrong, our 15 years together has not always been wedded bliss! In fact, truth be told, it has been hard… really, really hard at times! In 2015 I honestly didn’t think we’d make it. At the end of that year is when I started praying for a word for my life. I made a bet with God (I know risky and not the wisest idea). I asked God to give me a word for my life in 2016. The word I was given was “commitment.” What I realized is that in all of my life I had never truly been committed to any one thing or any one person. Not even my husband! Wow! After pondering that realization it made sense. I mean, I grew up without a Dad so I already had “men issues” and, the strained relationship I had with my Mom growing up only added to my trust issues. Gosh, my husband didn’t have a chance!
So, I swallowed my pride and promised to put my fear aside if God showed up for me! I told Him that I would commit myself to my husband and my career like I had never done before. That I would bravely let down my guard and open my heart completely and trust the husband that God blessed me with and commit to the profession I believe He had called me to. The catch was this: IF, at the end of 2016, my life was still in the same place I was going to make drastic changes. The lesson here is: Don’t test God!
At the end of 2016 God had put a love in my heart for my husband I never thought I’d ever have again. And, he gave me a new perspective on how to run my real estate business in a way that would honor Him. God showed up! The next year my word was “possibilities.” And, well, you know what my word was last year.
As we vacationed in Cabo, I reflected on my word for this year, “Margin.” The definition of margin is an amount allowed or available beyond what is actually necessary: to allow a margin for error.
I have never given myself nearly enough margin both personally or professionally. All of my life I have strived to earn other people’s love and acceptance and, in doing so, I have worked myself toward a life of unrealistic expectations, fear, pressure, unhealthy boundaries, and discontentment. All because I don’t allow margin. I don’t have margin (or grace) for myself and, many times, I do not have margin for other people (especially those closest to me). This has caused undue fear & anxiety in my life for far too long!
A life without margin is detrimental. No margin in relationships can result in resentment and bitterness. No margin at work can cause overwhelming stress and unrest. No margin for yourself can cause anxiety, unrealistic expectations, lack of peace, and discontentment. A life without margin misses the beauty and unexpected surprises each day has to offer. A life with no margin misses moments that can never be returned to us. There is no faith, no grace, and no room for error when there is no margin in our lives. So, to say that margin is an appropriate word for me this year is an understatement.
The gift I received while vacationing was understanding the true value of margin. I was reminded that when I give myself margin, I take better care of myself. When I take better care of myself, I take better care of those around me. When I give myself margin, I am not running around like a chicken with its head cut off trying to pack in another phone call or send another email. When I give myself margin, I am on time for my son’s baseball game and I have time to play a game of Uno with my family! When I give myself margin, I am able to be fully present with my husband. When I give myself margin, I operate in faith instead of fear, trusting that God truly has a plan and a purpose for my life.
And, you know what? All the tasks, chores, and errands will still be there for me tomorrow after I allow myself margin. So, here’s to a life of more margin for all of us! Be kind to yourselves, friends.