Everyone has some bizzarities.
Mine just happens to be making up words. Like that one.
I am a good girl raised by the law. And in many ways, I still operate best that way. I’m a list-maker. So I can check it off and see my progress. I have many self-imposed rules. Rules like…
1. Don’t paint your fingernails unless your toenails are painted.
Toenails are just uglier than real nails. So, my priorities are in order. Always paint the ugliest first. I feel as if my toes should always be painted. Even in the winter. Even with close-toed shoes. Always. So if I don’t have time to paint those, I don’t have time to paint my fingernails. I also have an order for shaving.And it gets done year-round. Armpits first, legs next, then…..
But I digress.
Also, I used to hate it when people used the phrase “painting their nails.” It’s polishing, people.
2. Don’t get on social media unless you’re on the treadmill. Unless I have a notification. Or unless I have a specific wall to write on or a specific picture to post. The older I get, the more I forget. So if it’s there, it must happen then before it goes away.
Consequently, I’m not on much. These days, exercise is more outside and with friends and at gyms. I’ll try to make time for you guys. But maybe not again until winter.
Which leads right into…
3. Don’t get on social media without blessing someone. Spread some sunshine. Be positive. Rejoice with someone or cry with someone. The Gospel is not just witnessing. It is testifying. I don’t get on Facebook to just like everyone’s status, although I do plenty of that. I get on to find needs. To identify ways to bless people. To pray over situations. Social media gets a lot of bust, but it’s because people use it to express themselves before they take their expressions to God. I’ve been guilty of it.
I’m in it to change it. I want encouragement to be my main goal. I’m going to redeem this thing before it’s over.
4. If a book is to be MINE, really mine, it will be highlighted, underlined, and marked up. I want posterity to know what was important to me.
Who am I kidding? I want to know what was important to me. Five minutes ago.
5. Recycle paper. We throw so much paper away that just by recycling it alone stretched our trash drop-offs an extra week. That’s a LOT of trees. I believe they’re here for me, yes. And I’d like them to be around when I need a back-scratcher.
6. Keep your metabolism going. Whether that be exercising 5 minutes, or stretching in the backroom while you wait for your lunch to microwave. I jump on the treadmill when I’m talking on the phone, or if I know I have a lot of texts to send. Or an email to read. You’ll be surprised how fast the time goes. And if you hold on with one hand, you can do it in the dark. And still go at LEAST 4 mph.
Incidentally, I hated when people called their cell phones a “phone.” No, a phone was attached to a wall or had an antenna. Now, I rarely use the word “cell.” I do love “cellica-phone”, though. It’s the best form of that word.
7. Don‘t be sucked into “motivation clothes.” Nope. If it don’t fit, it don’t stay. (With the exception of pregnancy clothes that people have given me.) I’m not going out to buy new clothes until I get to the size I want. Now THAT is motivation.
8. As often as you can, give yourself the chance to fast. Either from a meal, or from a shopping spree, or from a treat. For the express purpose of spending time with God. As offering a living sacrifice. It feels so special, so private, so sacred. I’m a huge promoter of finding what works in my relationship with God. Just like you experience different things with your love to find out what commonalities you share, Jesus wants the same treatment.
9. Don’t be routine. This one is reallllyyyy hard for me. I’m a routine girl. I measure my progress by my routine. I want so badly to be consistent, but every day is different, and different days require different needs. So I have to be intentional about getting over myself.
If you have a “prayer closet”, and that’s what keeps you from being distracted, do that. If moving around to different places keeps it fresh, do that. If your bed makes you sleepy, or your desk makes you check off your to-do list mentally, do it at the dining room table. If that makes you hungry, go back to the bed. Find what works for you.
Some people are big proponents of morning devotions. I tend to want to curl up and go back to sleep. I feel like it’s not fair to give God the sleepiest part of my day. I’m more of a night owl, and when I know Brandon is preoccupied with the tv, I feel less guilty about taking time from him and spending it exclusively with God. (I’d love to know what works for you). But like I said, don’t feel like you have to do things a certain way. I am always guilting myself for not being consistent. There’s another made-up word.
Jesus doesn’t want consistent as much as He wants persistent.
That’s important. Jesus doesn’t want consistent as much as He wants persistent. All of these rules that make up my existence, they are nice standards to go by. They do reflect my priorities. But if, at the end of the day, I feel like I don’t measure up and I have none of my lists checked off, I’m not under par. I’m loved. I’m a child of God. Instead of beating myself up about not spending an hour on my knees before work, I walk around and pray throughout the day. I read a devotional on the shelf and thank God for my job. I find people to minister to and I encourage them. I mediate on Scripture.
These are simple things, but they are HARD for a girl wired like me. I can’t measure my goodness in hours and minutes. I can’t check off meditation or prayers. I can’t show the world or my diary how spiritual I am.
But He knows. And he’s my standard. And any other standard of perfection is an idol.
So the nails go unpainted and the exercise and social media go to the wayside and my perfectionism goes back on the shelf. Because Jesus is my God. I’m not only proclaiming it with my mouth, but also with my life.