“All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” is an old English proverb which originated in 1659. It could be applied to today’s workaholics. Human nature has been the same from time immemorial.
I am a workaholic. One of the last things I do at night is to write a TO DO list for the following day. I never complete it – it is rather like a wish list – and things like order Christmas cards online to be delivered on 1 December get put off until 1 December… I have an excuse: I’m 84 and things I used to do in a flash, now take much longer and aren’t improved by arthritic fingers. I understand an elderly relative of 90 saying “this year I won’t be sending Christmas cards.”
What do I do in the day? I get up at 6, have yoghurt and orange juice, answer mail, and read some news. Then I say my prayers, have a shower and get started. We are blessed in having a live-in carer who does everything for us. In the afternoon I usually sleep for an hour because, if I don’t, I cant work and have some recreation until midnight when I sign off and shut down after reading some theology, presently John Stott, 2 passages from the Old testament and one from the New.
What do I do for recreation? Ten minutes everyday learning German on Duolingo, I always have a book to read in the odd half hours, my preference being stories written by foreigners who have settled in France or Italy and converted tumbled-down properties into delightful homes. I look at BritBox with John over supper – BBC and ITV – and have just finished Jane Austen’s EMMA which was lovely. We also have Netflix with which I found it increasingly difficult to find programmes that I approved of and wanted to watch. Now that we have been vaccinated against COVID, we plan to walk in the lovely gardens in our retirement complex. We have just come out of complete isolation except for family visits. For a year and a half we only left our apartment once.
So am I a dull old girl? No, time has simply flown and I have so much to do, writing music, blogs, revising John’s writings for his website-to-be, an enormous job. But the days are the same 24/7. Even on the Sabbath I find myself pulling the donkey out of the ditch. But no more. The Lord God created the world and on the 7th day he rested. The Sabbath was holy. Jesus, when the crowds were pressing on him and his disciples, “took them apart for a while.” Sundays are going to be different. Things I normally do on Sunday, like filling daily doses into medicine boxes and ordering online a long list of household and food products will be done on Saturday. And I shall keep the Sabbath as nearly as I can. If you are a Christian workaholic, try this too. God’s commands are for our benefit.