When I started school in the early to mid 1980’s one of the first things we learned to do when we began to write was to draw a margin on our paper.
We would measure a couple of inches at the top and bottom to the left of the paper and draw a straight line down. The teacher would tell us that margins are important. There were two reasons we drew a margin. The first was to make sure everything was neatly in a straight line (that was about the only thing that was neat on my paper, my writing was and still is horrible!); the second was to be able to make notes or correct mistakes in the margin. These days we have computers to correct our mistakes, but back then we had to correct them in the margin.
As important as margins were back in elementary school, so personal margins are important in our lives today. So often we just tackle life head on without preparing for what we are going to be doing. Drawing a margin took no more than a minute, but it enabled the paper to be neat and also supplied a place to correct mistakes.
It only takes a short amount of time to create personal margin, yet it can create order in our lives and also a place to reflect and correct our mistakes. So often people forget to create healthy personal margin and their lives become cluttered and the different aspects of their lives start to run into each other.
I have found if I don’t create margin between the different parts of my life I start to stress, I start to let people down, I start to get overwhelmed, I start to break promises, I start to forget things and I start to go from problem to problem.
Basically margin is creating space in your life to plan, think, mend, enjoy and take a break from all the things that full our lives. Jesus was a man who created margin. Just ask the disciples who often found Jesus missing. He was not neglecting them, just drawing margins in His life so that when He was needed He was able to be fully engaged.
Try to create some margin in your life this week. I know your spouse, your kids, your friends, your employees and your peers will appreciate it.