Back to the Basics

Back to the Basics

Wow…it’s a brand new year. 2016 is here! Can you believe it? Believe it or not, it took me by surprise. One day, I was rocking along and the next, POW! 2015 was gone. Did it sneak up on you like that? I hope not…

But I have to say…this year hit me like a two by four. It’s sudden arrival also taught me a lesson. A rather painful one, even if I do say so myself. Which lesson was that? A fairly simple one actually…slow down and pay attention.

You see, I spend a lot of time at the computer (when I’m not behind the pharmacy counter.) I write my stories, critique, and blog. Throw in marketing for my Etsy Shop, and books as well as maintaining my website and social media, I’m lucky to have time to edit the manuscripts due to be published this year! Hence, the sudden appearance of 2016.

But the Lord used this explosion of reality to wake me up. Not to show a need for time management or learn how to juggle the “things” in my life more effectively. No, He alerted me (painfully, I might add) to what I was doing to myself and those I love, including Him.

I can hear the questions headed my way already. What’s so bad about being busy for the Lord? But she published two books last year, shouldn’t she be thankful? What’s she complaining about? I’d die to be that busy!

First, let me make one thing perfectly clear. I am thankful for all the blessings the Lord has bestowed on me through my life. And I serve Him and only Him. If I’m going to be swamped and searching for a bit of free time to spend with my husband or son, I definitely want it to be because of Him and no one else.

And that’s the dilemma I had last year…a LOT. But looking back, it wasn’t only because of God.

I fell into the quagmire of serving more than one Master. I did what I’m notorious for. I strove to please everyone I possibly could, stretching myself and my most valuable resource to the limit…my time. If I’m not careful, I’ll do it again. And who will suffer? Me, my family, my relationship with God, my writing…

So, in 2016, it’s back to the basics. What do I mean by that? The Lord comes first. His will, His direction’s foremost in my mind, heart, and soul. Prayer’s my daily battlefield, and I’m focusing my writing and blogging on Him.

The Lord is good. All the time.

What pearls of wisdom did you learn last year? How are you applying the lessons? Let me know! I’d hate to try to reinvent the wheel, so to speak (as would many others!)

In Christ,




Mat 6:24 “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.”

Renee Blare About Renee Blare

A pharmacist by trade, Renee Blare serves the community of northeastern Wyoming by day and writes any chance she can get. Nestled against the Black Hills with her husband, crazy old dog and ornery cat, she pens her Christian suspense stories and invites you check out her website, blog, and social media.


  1. Oh, I can so identify, Renee. I praise God for using me, but wow, would I like to find a way to slow down. Yesterday, I wrote a contracted short story about putting God first. It was about a busy family of 3 that lost their way with all their obligations. We’re on the same wave length. Your post is a great reminder to all us. If we sit at the feet of Jesus and listen, we have chosen “the best part” like Mary in the Bible.

  2. Renette Steele says:

    We May not always understand the direction GOD is taking us, But if we keep HIm in the forefront and obey He will bless us.
    From an early age i knew what i wanted to do in life and i did it. When my youngest graduated I retired and became Lost. Keep asking GOD to show me what next.
    He has taught me to trust Him daily, I don’t need to plan days or years in advance, Just make the most of today and go where He leads me today.
    Thanks for this reminder this morning Renee! Very blessed He crossed our paths.

  3. Yes, Renee, I can sure identify also and i don’t even have small kids. I’m learning that being busy doesn’t necessarily mean I am growing spiritually or going deeper in my relationship with God. In 2016, I want to be intentional in the time I spend with Him.

  4. As women, we’re hard-wired to care and nurture, but that so easily turns into the people-pleasing you so perfectly described. I am a recovering people-pleaser and so often need the reminder that I have only one Master. Thank you, Renee!

  5. I’m so glad I’m not alone in the struggle, Janet. It’s hard to say “no,” but I need to learn how and when to do it. I will definitely be praying for wisdom this year and spending a lot of time with the Lord in prayer! More than ever!

  6. Exactly, Jude! I was so busy “doing” for the Lord and everyone else that my relationships suffered the most. My relationship with Lord was at the top of the list! I shoved time with Him and my family to the bottom of the list. My son is now 26 years old and is busier than I am but when he would TRY to be with me, I brushed him off.
    Too busy…
    Yeah, the Lord slapped me…hard.

  7. Hi Becky,

    “People-pleasing” has gotten me into trouble before. I thought I’d learned to recognize it. It cloaked itself last year. Writing. My books, articles, promotion. In addition to my own needs, I “needed” to help everyone who asked me for help or thought I did.
    The Lord reminded me I’m not Him. Once again, painfully.
    Thanks for stopping by!

  8. “Seek ye first the kingdom of God…” – Yes! Thank you for sharing.

  9. Renee, the people pleasing part reminds me of something from Henry W. Longfellow – I read it in my 12-step meditation book.
    “He that respects himself is safe from others; he wears a coat of mail that none can pierce.” Just LOVE this, and it helps me so much to refer back to it, since people pleasing has always been a struggle for me. Thanks for sharing this post!

  10. Thanks, Cynthia. 🙂

  11. Thank you, Gail! I’ve had to come BACK to the conclusion that I can’t do everything on my own, ask for help when I need it, and give the rest to the Lord. 🙂

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