I am a multitasker. My ability to do about eight different things at once means that I can handle with some amount of sanity the multiple requests, phone calls, and visitors that come with being both a receptionist and the Human Resources Admin for my company. Even on a chill day I find myself answering e-mails, searching flights and clinics, sitting on hold with said clinics, juggling meetings in the conference rooms, and directing phone calls and attempting to do it with a smile (yeah, sometimes I'm an epic failure at that one). Everyone needs something at the same time, and it is always urgent (no really, it has to be done right this second, drop everything you’re doing and make my task priority, the fate of the universe depends on it! :P).
Most of the time I manage to keep my head above water, but recently we moved locations to join with two other offices and, as I suspected, things got crazy. The phones ring constantly, people need things mailed, flights booked, food ordered, copies made, kitchen stocked, supplies ordered, messages sent (no one has voice mail set up yet), new hires from all over the country processed and there are moments in my day where I truly wonder if I’m about to let the thin strings of sanity slip through my fingers or if they will plain just snap. Nothing has shown me just how lazy I am or how little I trust the Lord to get me through stress than this job has. Nor has anything shown me just how prideful I am.
Last week one of my managers came to me for a mail out when the phone rang. Being primary I am supposed to answer right away and when I did I discovered the call was for me. I tried dealing with it as quickly as possible, asking a few of my own questions because that office can be hard to get ahold of, but when I hung up the manager told me I had been rude and should have told the caller that I would call them back. Stunned, stressed, fed up, all I could do was stare. For the next hour or so I worked on the project, fighting tears, praying, and wondering if working at Starbucks would really be so bad (free burned coffee, maybe?). I was just trying to do my job…I’m so stressed…I feel like I’m drowning…
Eventually, the Lord humbled me and gave me the grace to repent and ask forgiveness from my manager. It didn’t matter that I wasn’t trying to be rude or act as if the project was not important, what did matter was that this manager had been hurt. No matter how much I wanted to be the victim, God has called me to “regard others as more important than [myself]” (Philippians 2:3). He reminded me that His purpose is to redeem the world, and I can play a part in this by loving those who He made in His image.
My biggest stumbling block is who I choose to serve as a master. Just as I struggle to be both the receptionist and the Human Resources Admin well, attempting to serve both God and myself is a path to destruction. The sin of the garden remains imbedded in me, that desire to dictate right and wrong, the desire to essentially be god. These two masters are mutually exclusive; I cannot serve both. As Christ said in Matthew“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other.”
I think this might be one of the reasons why Paul speaks of us being “crucified with Christ” in Galatians. Before the Lord can kick us off the throne of our hearts we must die; it’s the only way we will ever give up our illegitimate claim to control. So my prayer is that I will stop trying to serve two masters that I will stop trying to usurp my King and bow to His rule.
Do you find yourself struggling for control?