Too Busy To Abide

Wanted to share some printables that I made for my home using the art of Helen Allingham, an English watercolor painter who lived during the Victorian era. Her scenes are domestic and soothing, cozy and inviting. They mostly depict cottage life and pastoral scenes. They make me want to step into the painting and stay.

In my own devotions, I’ve been meditating on God as our dwelling place.

We’re all busy, aren’t we? And slowing down is a choice.  I’ve had to say “no” to good things so that I can make room for the “best” things and honestly, every fall as Peter and I evaluate our commitments,  I have to make the choice all over again because I can’t afford to miss structured time, intentional times, with the Lord.

Psalm 90 “Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations.”

The words dwelling place conjure up images of relaxing, enjoying, reclining, and staying in one spot for a long time. In a world that is fast paced and glorifies the “busy”, we, by default, hesitate to abide. In fact, we’re too busy to abide. Abiding is for the lazy. Abiding is for the loafer. We’re Martha people with things to do and kids to raise and all.the.stuff. And yet God has called us to rest and refresh in Him.

I think it’s safe to say that most of us relate better to God as a refuge or a tower or a place that we dart in and out of in times of trials. When things get really bad, we reason, I know who I can count on: My Refuge. And when trouble comes, I know I always have the fall back: our Strong Tower. It’s like God is our default–plan B when we can’t handle life ourselves.

God wants to be our Dwelling Place.  Period. God never meant for us to live frantic lives independently of Him.

This is what I’m focusing on this week.

Anyway, I was very much blessed by a talk by Holly Stratton (SermonAudio) on Three Laws for Christian Women and I’ve made reminders for myself that you are free to print and enjoy.

The Law of our Mind: Christlike Humility

Helen Paterson Allingham 1

Phil 2: 6-8

Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

The Law of the Mouth: Kindness

Proverbs 31:26 “She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.”

painting 2

The Law of the Heart: Forgiveness

image 3

Eph. 4:32

“And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”


I hope you have a great week. Feel free to share what you’re learning, reading, or listening to in the comments.




  1. Erin Roneree says:

    This hits home with me right now. My 3rd baby just turned 6 months, my middle child is 2 1/2 and in the throws of the terrible 2s and my older 5 year old is starting kindergarten this week. I feel like we are in constant transition lately and I have been hearing the voice of the Lord telling me to assess and cut back in our lives so that we can all be better focused on HIM and the things He wants us to be. So your post just confirms that all the more. It can be so hard! My brain hurts lately from all that spins through it in summer. I am glad fall is here and God is speaking to my weary heart that needs to slow down. I think sometimes we want to go out so much cause its tough to stay home with the kdis too! its certainly not relaxing LOL! But I digress. Thank you for faithfully serving us through your blog. Erin.

    • Sarah Beals says:

      Aw, praying that God’s presence will be crystal clear during this weary time. Sometimes faith comes when “life” isn’t in our neat little packages and we just have to cling! Praying, Erin.

  2. Stephi Lemon says:

    It has always struck me that Psalm 90 was written by Moses. God was his dwelling place when he had no permanent physical dwelling place of his own for 40 years.

  3. Angela says:

    I have often seen these paintings and wondered who the artist was. Thank you for posting these paintings and the encouraging words.

  4. Tim says:

    Abiding in Jesus is something I need to remind myself of occasionally too, Sarah (although I can say that I’m better at this as a default mode now than years ago). As coincidence would have it, tomorrow’s post touches on John 15 where Jesus tells his friends that they are to abide in him and he will produce fruit through them.

    • Sarah Beals says:

      I think I run in seasons. We have a toddler in the house again, so I am definitely readjusting and needed this reminder from Ps. 90. Of course, “fruitlessness” is not a byproduct I want. 😉

  5. The Peaceful Haven says:

    These are lovely! Thanks for taking the time to write and for the encouraging scripture!