I’m a “lists” gal. Always have been. It’s part of my “beaver” personality; a way to bring order to my day and the chaos of ideas and activities and needs. And I like checking things off my list; it gives me a boost of confidence and accomplishment. On really rough says, “take a shower” will make it on the list, just so I can feel good about having completed at least that.
Psalm 90:12 “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom,” and 1 Corinthians 14:40 “But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way,” have always encouraged me in my tasks. If I am truly to “gain a heart of wisdom,” however, I need to keep my list making and monitoring in check.
Have you ever caught yourself obsessing over your list? I have. I’ve sometimes given more emphasis to the list than the activities. There are times I’ve fallen into the thought that, if I make the perfect list, it will all turn out great. But my list must be perfect. Sometimes control over the list itself feels like the only control of anything I have. And so I obsess… over the list. The biggest result of that behavior is that little is actually accomplished, thereby making me feel defeated and discouraged.
Catching myself in this destructive habit and redirecting my thoughts can be tough. But I need to examine my ultimate goal – a heart of wisdom; glory to God; being a good steward with my time by ordering my day aright. If my focus is the Lord, then the list becomes less important. When the list becomes less important, I accomplish more and feel like I’ve done what God actually ordered for my day. I need to make the list work for me, not against me. I can only do that when my focus is Christ.
Take some time to order your day and make your list, after you align your focus to the One who already has it all worked out. You will be one step closer to gaining a heart of wisdom, and hopefully checking off a number of items from your list.