Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Do You Want to Get Better?

Consistency is hard for most people.  Many seasons of life can be incredibly busy or chaotic just be virtue of the responsibilities involved.  Young adults are feeling great pressures in trying to figure out their lives.  Young parents can be overwhelmed by the demands of children.  Careers change, jobs are lost and finances can be tough.  We move a lot.  Older children bring their own set of challenges.  There are a lot of grandparents raising grandchildren.  Relationships break up.  There is a lot going on.  Add on to this the mental and emotional shake up that hurts, habits and hang ups can bring.  It is a recipe for inconsistency, for sure.

But the reality is that we make choices everyday about what is most important to us and that is demonstrated in a strong way by our daytimers and our checkbooks.  This is an article about our daytimers.

When I gave art lessons to children I noticed that this activity, probably because I was too gracious about it, became the lesser priority.  Although I worked hard to plan the lessons if a soccer coach scheduled an extra practice, there went the art lesson.  There were many scenarios that meant that the art lesson would be cancelled by the parent.  I realized that it just wasn't being taken that seriously.  If there was nothing else going on that day it was easy not to take the child to the art lesson.

Recovery in life, or said another way, our spiritual journey with Christ seems to be put on the back burner a lot.  Oh, we would never say that because we don't equate consistency with gatherings such as Celebrate Recovery or church to be a measure of our spirituality - but I would challenge that idea.  Actually, the writer of Hebrews challenged that idea.  We are told quite clearly not to "neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage and warn each other...".  

It is true that God alone sees the heart and that God alone knows motive.  Absolutely true.  But if we want to get better at anything, it takes consistency.  If we are serious, we engage in those activities that not only encourage us but hold us accountable to what we have said is important in our lives.  Chances are we won't work those Celebrate Recovery steps on our own - and if we do, certainly not on a steady pace.  If we are lone rangers our progress will be haphazard at best.  As much as we hate to admit it, we do need others and God designed us that way.  Hit and miss means mostly miss.

A New Year is around the corner.  What is important to you?  Do you want to get better?  Here's a challenge - not only for you - but for your close circle of family and friends that are very affected and influenced by you.  Dig in.  Make the commitment and make a decision to stick with it.  Is getting better important to you?  Write it in your daytimer with a sharpie - that's permanent ink. Or enter it on your iphone - every gathering for three months until it becomes a good habit.  The people in your life will one day thank you.

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