I love a good list. Even if the task is unpleasant, I grit my teeth and don’t procrastinate.
This might sound like a good thing.
But when it comes to connecting to Jesus, my type A personality has often robbed me of the very thing I’m longing for: joy.
Since I became a Christian, I’ve known that daily connection to God is important. I’ve known it’s something I should do. So I have. With about as much joy as you’d expect.
There’s a place for discipline even when the feelings aren’t there. But only discipline leads me to a place of bleakness. Not to Jesus.
Lately, watching my girls play, I’m struck by how enthusiastically they connect to God.
My eldest brings me her story Bible and asks for David and Goliath. She makes up impromptu praise songs on walks. She and her sister put on a worship CD and jump on the bed. They “play” church, strumming on a guitar.
Lately, I’m trying to follow their lead. Instead of checking Jesus off my list of things to do, I’m trying to play at worshipping him.
- I put on the training wheels. In my twenties, a “good” quiet time was full of elaborate effort. Now, I’m find more closeness with God when I keep it radically simple. I’ll read a short daily devotional from the Book of Common Prayer—the same words, every day. These “rote” prayers have worn lovely grooves into my memory that I return to over and over during the day. That’s dearer to me than 1000 concordance references.
- I get out the craft supplies. If I find a verse that resonates with me, I write it out with my best handwriting and decorate it with markers or paint. Heck, I’d use googly eyes if it helped.
- I join the circle time. When my girls want to play church, I join in. The other day, my oldest led my youngest and me in worship for a good fifteen minutes. She stood on a coffee table and sang the words to some favorite praise hymns. I think it’s one of the most uplifting worship experiences I’ve had—ever.
- I start a sing-a-long. We’ve invested in some great worship CDs that set Bible verses to music. The other day, full of anxiety, I put on the “Courage” CD. I danced around the room (my daughters joined in) for a few minutes. After we stopped, God’s Word echoed in my head all day, instead of the fretting I’d heard before.
- I find a buddy. I asked a friend to pray with me once a week. Praying together connects me to someone dear to me; knowing her prayer requests motivates me to pray throughout the week.
- I tell my Daddy. If even the little I do starts oppressing me, I stop it, and lift my hurt up to God. I ask him to renew a joyful desire for prayer and worship. Being honest with God eases my heart. He has blessed me over and over by answering my prayer.
I like to get things done. I like to feel accomplished. But when it comes to Jesus, I’m finding less of me is more. Less striving helps me sit at Jesus’ feet.
I thank God every day for giving me my kids’ example to follow. Watching them, I’m leaning on Him more faithfully. And I’m becoming—Praise Jesus!—more like the child he commanded me to be.
By Heather Caliri of A Little YesLeave a Comment