Psalms 20:4 “May He give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.” NIV
This year, for the first time ever, I decided to have a New Year’s resolution. I have never been one to participate in that silly ritual. Even when I was younger and everyone around me was making plans to lose weight or make a budget, I was going along my merry way with not a care. OK, well, I am sure I had cares, I just didn’t want to make plans I knew that I would not keep. I am the world’s worst procrastinator. I make pages and pages of lists and have notes all over the place to remind me of things to come. I have, count them, THREE calendars in my house. Two in the kitchen and one in the bedroom. Actually I have 5 because if you count my appointment book for the grooming and my calendar on my phone, I am surrounded by things to remind me of events I have to either participate in or get done. Sweetheart and children all will tell you that I can’t remember my own birthday, much less theirs. I have even been known to ask a child when their birthday is on the day of their birthday. Sad, I know.
So I determined that in the second half of my life, I was going to change. That change has been difficult but I wish to shout my success to you all!!!! I MADE MY BED FOR 31 DAYS STRAIGHT!!!! Is that not amazing????? I know. You are sitting there dumbfounded that I would admit that for 50 years I never made my bed. Well, I would like to say that I have an excuse for never having made my bed such as my mother made me make my bed for years and I rebelled or I was once attacked by a quilt monster and I had some fear of bed covers. Sorry. None of it is true. My mother made my bed for me basically until I left home. If she didn’t, then my grandmother did. I was taught from a young age that a good wife and mother had a beautifully made home, including beds. My thought was that no one should be in my bedroom except me anyway so what did I care what the bed looked like. Usually sweetheart was gone before I got up and I was often in bed before he got home so it didn’t ever seem to matter. I think the only day a week my bed was made was the day I did laundry and washed the sheets. (which is weekly, just in case you think I am a total failure as a housewife!)
Last year I made the promise to do my devotions every day. I am happy to say that even if I had to do it late at night, I always got at least one devotion a day done. This was very exciting to me. I have never done something every day for a year ever. When I sat down at the end of the year to ponder what I wanted to add to my daily activity, I had quite a list. (No I won’t tell you what was on the list. You will just have to keep reading every day to find out what I keep adding!) I chose making the bed because it was one of the simpler things on the list. I could add it to my morning and had no excuse about no time because it only takes me about 3 minutes start to finish. Hey! I didn’t say I would have hospital corners. I just said I was making my bed. It’s not beautiful but it’s made. Beauty comes later. Hopefully.
I have learned that to make a resolution, I have to start small and easy. I have to only promise to do it once, then twice, then three times, and so on. I can’t promise myself that I will do it every day for a year. I know without a doubt that I will fail. And when I fail, I beat myself up and more than likely I quit doing it. I take that same thought process with my devotions. Some days I have an hour, sometimes half an hour, and sometimes I grab five minutes. I know in my heart, that my Abba wants the most important part of my day. I know that I should never begrudge him one minute. If He asks for an entire day, I need to be ready to give it to him. More than likely He will not take the entire day, but the key to my resolution is that I need to be ready to give Him whatever He asks for. I have found that He knows the contents of my heart. He knows that I WANT to do these devotions. I have found that if I get up and give Him the first few minutes of my day, He will help me with the rest of the day.
Now I realize that some of you like to do your devotions in the evenings. That’s ok if that works for you. Remember that this is between you and your Abba. Only you. Only your Abba. You don’t have to please me, please your sweetheart, please your bible study leader, please your pastor. You don’t have to follow anyone else’s suggestions or rules. You only have to please your Father in Heaven. If doing your devotions before you go to bed helps you get up and start your day fresh and ready to go after a peaceful nights sleep, I say GO FOR IT SISTER! I teach a class in the grooming industry called “Because I Said So!” The basis of the class is that so many times in life, we do things because someone told us that’s the way we should do it. We heard it from a friend, we read it in a book, an “expert” told us it would make us better. But it just doesn’t work for us. So we get flustered and upset and we feel guilty because we can’t do it right and ultimately we stop doing it or we do it poorly. That’s not what your time with God should be dear friend. It should be an open communication between you and your Abba. It should be you sharing time with Him. It should be you putting forth your very best and feeling God’s grace surround you. Will you always get an answer? Will you always feel wonderful and spiritual and spoken too? Let me give you a resounding NO!. There are days when you will be cranky or short tempered or tired or just not “with it”. But that’s ok. It is the effort that God rewards. If you have put all of your best effort into your devotion time, He will cover you with His grace.
Some days my bed is nice and tidy and the corners are square. The blankets are smooth and the pillows are fluffed. Some days the bed looks like a cyclone hit and it’s obvious I just threw the covers over everything and gave it a passing glance. But, at the end of this month, I could honestly say that I tried. Every single day. And that’s the way that I feel about my devotions. Some days they aren’t my best devotions but I make the effort every single day. I feel so good about what I have accomplished. Everyone in my family thinks I have lost my mind but I don’t care. They just don’t understand the feeling of accomplishment when, at the ripe old age of 50, you can say you made your bed every day for a month! You will have to wait till the end of February to see if I can keep juggle three things every morning!