Why Is Rest the New Luxury For Us? 

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Photo via Unsplash

Last week I said yes over and over again to mounting commitments, when I should have said no. I feel lazy for napping as my daughter does so I work instead. My body aches for the restorative power of sleep, yet I resist relentlessly.

All of this has me wondering if you and I have convinced ourselves (especially Mamas) that rest is the new luxury? 

Why Can’t We Rest?
Why do we work ourselves into frenzies, desperate to placate others, running marathons for fleeting acceptance and pats on the back? Hashtags like #TeamNoSleep, #Hustle and #MomBoss fill our social media timelines. No one wants to become a slacker, and admit fatigue plagues them.

Nearly all of my close girlfriends carry exhaustion like shawls, rest barely attainable in the chaotic world of non-stop productivity. Some day, we wistfully say, “we’ll sleep,” but there is always more – an endless barrage of family and career obligations, another email to send (I am the queen of that line) or phone calls and meetings. It NEVER stops. EVER. These  dizzying to-do-lists squelch opportunities to live fully present.

According to an article in Forbes magazine which cited a study on multitasking, our brains can only handle so much information:
“Recent research shows that not only does multitasking not save time, it actually hinders your ability to operate efficiently. Chief among the evidence, a study from Stanford University revealed that the brains of people who regularly attempt to do multiple tech-oriented tasks at once–such as e-mailing, IM-ing, watching TV and browsing the Internet–pay a high price…”

Before we know it, the day is done and we remain as disconnected from rejuvenation as when it began.

Doing Less, but Doing it Well…
What if we hit our collective reset buttons and committed to doing less while embracing excellence? I listened to Bishop T.D. Jakes discuss the “power of focus” recently, and was struck by the simple and profound concept he put forth: not a mastery of multitasking, but the art of laser focusing on your purpose.

Our purpose is not merely what we do, it is the force which propels us forward and imbues our life with meaning. It’s why we are on the planet. Essentially it is our offering to the world. If you and I allow the exhaustion of juggle and noise to deplete it, we can help no one, least of all ourselves.

Let’s all slow down, and stop making rest a luxury.

Inspiration For Your Ears: From Jumping with Faith to Activism

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Photo Credit: Pixaby
Photo Credit: Pixaby

Inspiration is everywhere if we remain open. I start my days filling up with Joel Osteen; he reminds me all things are possible with God.

This week I took in some great content – songs, talks and more. Here’s my 

Steve Harvey’s heartfelt talk on jumping for your dreams.

I discovered this beautiful Matthew West song,  “Forgiveness“, and I find it speaks to my heart anew each time I listen. The story behind it is amazing, too.

His equally stirring “Do Something” urges us Christians to create change (starting with our day-to-day action) instead of complaining. 

Activism + Soulful Music = new music from Black Lives Matter activists Rev. Sekou and Jay-Marie Hill. The duo is releasing an album this Sunday which is an ode to this growing movement. Here is the first track, “We Comin.” 

Mary J. Blige’s ethereal song, “Doubt,” is the anthem for every girl and woman people counted out. “Now you’re looking at a leader, now you’re staring at a Queen,” she sings unapologetically.

My bestie Shan turned me on to motivational powerhouse Lisa Nichols. Her talk, “The Art of Action“, on moving in a radical direction to live your dreams, will make you quite uncomfortable with mediocrity. 

Believing God When  it Feels Impossible

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
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Photo Credit: Sven Scheuermeier

“What is impossible with men is possible with God.” Luke 18:27

Think you got faith?, 2015 seemed to say, mocking us at every turn. I’ll show you, and the curve balls flew in rapid succession – car issues, ongoing family medical challenges, and tough business / career decisions. In myriad ways, it was the toughest year of our lives. I looked at my husband many times, drowning in exasperation and despair, often befuddled: Where is God in all of this?

There are days when I wake up, beating back exhaustion, and swallowing tears. Yet His grace sustains, guides me through the next day and the next. Moment by moment, one second at a time.  

Always, God provides sources of encouragement, inspiration and hope. I connect with authentic people on Instagram, their words become daily light posts along this journey, and songs like Mandisa’s “Overcomer” or “Intentional” by Travis Greene, exalt faith over fear. 

I find ministeries online and meditate on verses of scripture which feel as if they were written solely for me in this season of difficulty. And I read books (Dare to Believe) by healing ministers such as Becky Dvorak who works in Guatemala, and travels the world with her husband, delivering powerful testimonies, teaching people to activate their faith and walk in the supernatural.

Slowly, friends, I am learning to transcend the physical and embrace my spiritual eyesight. 

I believe God will do the impossible. And I say this to myself repeatedly, especially during those times when the weight of disillusionment chases  me, relentless in its pursuit of my joy. 

God can and will do the impossible in our lives, friends. Yet we must do our part, building radical and unwavering faith within our spirits. 

Three Ways to Activate Your Faith: 

1. Put up encouraging & healing scripture verses all around your home and office. Read them aloud daily, several times a day. 

2. Set aside quiet time to read your devotional and bible. Meditate on these words and ask God what they mean to you in this season of your life. I enjoy The First Five, a daily devotional app for iPhones and Our Daily Bread (which can be found in hard copy or electronic form – web and app). 

3. Listen to praise music with meaningful statements about victory and enduring struggle. I particularly enjoy selections from prolific artists such as Big Dadddy Weave, Mali Music, Lauren Daigle, and Plumb

How do you activate your faith? Share with me below!