Beating the Sunday Evening Melancholy

Since I had no classes last week for Thanksgiving, I spent the first half of the week working on a multitude of small projects around the house: hanging a shelf, organizing cabinets, purging unworn clothes from our closets, and upgrading a set of old kitchen canisters -- the perfect assortment of odd jobs to scratch my organizational and DIY itches.

Give me a spare hour and a cabinet or closet to organize, and I enter this remarkably happy place.  When your pantry is lined up just so, like a little spice rack miracle, you can't help but smile (and periodically open your cabinets, even when you don't need anything, to bask at the efficiency and order.)

The latter half of the week, understandably, was devoted to family and feasting, which was lovely and warm and welcome.

And now it's Sunday evening.  I've pulled out my work bag from underneath the corner chair in my dining room where I had been hiding it from my sight.  My alarm is set.  Later tonight I'll even consider tomorrow's outfit so I don't stand in my closet paralyzed in a Monday morning stupor, unable to decide what to wear.

The typical routine will start once again.

Over the years I've noticed that when this realization settles on a Sunday evening after a break, a twinge of melancholy settles, too.  The melancholy doesn't last long; quite frankly, there's just no time to nurse such a sentiment.  You simply pick up the mantle of routine yet again and move along.

But what's helped me the most is to remember that God walks every step with me, whether Sunday evening or Monday morning.  Sometimes I still fall into the trap of believing that if my life were perfectly organized and pleasant and controlled (much like my newly-arranged cabinets), then I'd have peace.  Then all would be well with my soul.

But this thinking isn't realistic; life rarely is perfectly organized and predictable.  Nor is this thinking healthy.  It puts me at the emotional mercy of my circumstances, leaving me happy when all is well, but frustrated or frazzled or depressed when it isn't.  What good is it to be at ease only when the situation around you is easy?

It's freeing to remember that regardless of my situation -- whether calmness reigns, chaos breaks out, or Sunday evening melancholy creeps in -- I can draw on Jesus' peace and presence. 

Circumstances don't need to dictate my feelings.  God's able to keep me in his perfect peace. 

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  1. Sunday evenings were always a test for me, too, Robin, while I was working. I called them the Sunday night dreads. I would begin to organize my Mondays in my mind...setting priorities and mentally going through all the "working folders" on my desk that awaited my attention. If I allowed it, Sunday evenings could really become an extension of my work week. But, then I would silently remind myself that God already knew what I was going to face each Monday and every day subsequent to Monday. And His peace would quiet my mind and before long I would begin to look forward to seeing what God appointed moments I was to have the next day. Sure made it easier for me to face Monday morning. He was faithful for me throughout my 23 years of work at the University and He remains faithful even now in my retirement. Love your inspiring articles, Robin.

    1. Jan, thank you so much for sharing how you could relate. I love hearing your perspective and encouragement!

  2. When I worked, I ALWAYS got that Sunday evening melancholy. Like you said, it never lasted long but it would appear without fail.

    You're right though. God is with us all our days. Isn't that so comforting?!

    Wishing you a lovely day.


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