A little over 15 months ago, life was moving along at what most of us consider a normal pace.
At the same time Babbie Mason, two-time Dove award-winning singer-songwriter and author, was closing in on 35 years of full-time ministry. As with most people at the time, her life was full. She was living by her calendar and juggling it all with great finesse — family, engagements, concerts, ministry assignments, squeezing in a few down days before the next event, and then doing it all over again! The calendar dictated just about every moment in her life.
And then COVID-19 happened, and life as we all knew it came to a screeching halt. Babbie admits,
“It wasn’t until then that I realized how exhausted I was. I had gotten into the habit of becoming acclimated to the fast-lane pace of my life. I had become a spinning top, and when COVID hit and the world stopped, I toppled over.”
As the pandemic began to settle in, the author continued teaching a few online college courses. During those first months, she realized that there might be an actual purpose in being home, living at a reduced pace. Babbie shares,
“I think we can all agree that COVID has been a horrific situation for so many of us, but God somehow allows things to continue to work for good in many situations at the very same time. I’ve realized that during COVID I came home to rest for the first time in 36 years. I slept and began to rest. I believe the shutdown taught me to catch my breath.”
By the time summer was in full swing, Babbie found herself doing things she had not been home to do before. Gardening, picking blueberries, making jam and homemade pickles! Now, on the other side of this season, she is holding tightly to lessons newly learned.
“I’ve realized that I don’t want to go back to where I was prior to COVID, because in all honesty, life was crazy.”
With the nation striving for pre-COVID normalcy, Babbie is also experiencing the tension of picking up where she left off. As the phone begins to ring with many opportunities to jump back into life as it was, Babbie is filtering each request with a refreshed mindset.
The Lord is a good booking agent, but we have to participate by asking Him if we should say yes or no. My desire is NOT to be driven but to be drawn. My heart’s prayer is: help me be drawn to you, God, and not driven by external things.
In learning to rest and breathe, Babbie has encountered new energy and excitement for what the Lord will do next. God has done something similar for many of us as He has taken our life experience during this unprecedented time and used it to pivot us into a new season with Him.
“You know when you live in His presence, you realize it’s not just a Sunday-to-Sunday thing; this relationship with Him is moment-by-moment. You are able to recognize that He has your back and your best interest at heart. You can live in anticipation of what He’s going to do in your life next. It’s not so much about the calendar these days as it is about the state of my heart. I want to live for Him moment by moment.”
As Babbie continues to move into this newest season of normal, she encourages us to do the same. “This time of reset has taught me to listen to the voice of the Lord. I’m learning I can enjoy ministry with the assignments God has given me AND enjoy my home. Whatever lane God has placed you in, flourish in that lane! For me, I use stories. Stories through song, stories in the books I write, and stories that I tell when I speak! We need your voice! Share your own stories with us!
Fully Qualified: Maximizing Your God-Given Potential is the author’s most recent book. In it, Babbie speaks to the creative about the ultimate purpose in their giftings. She shares that, in writing the book, “I wanted to help creatives know that their gifts are not for their consumption, but to use for the glory of God. It’s like any gift; whether it’s a small trinket or something greater, a gift is not just about the recipient! It is also about the giver. A giver thinks so much about the recipient that they choose to bless them! I find three things happen when we use our gifts for God:
(1) It brings glory to God. He always gets the glory. Always!
(2) we find immense joy in using our gifts, because…
(3) the gifts are a blessing to others!
Babbie admits, “It wasn’t until then that I realized how exhausted I was. I had gotten into the habit of becoming acclimated to the fast-lane pace of my life. I had become a spinning top, and when COVID hit and the world stopped, I toppled over.”