9.23.2007

Daily Routines and Growing Up in Him

Well, I must have someone praying for my evening routine . . . because I had the boys in bed by eight tonight and when I closed the book a few minutes ago Noah had been sleeping for 15 minutes and Brooks for 5. And now I can have the kind of evening that I enjoyed many of the nights of these last few years.

In I.T. we had written procedures and schedules for people to follow who didn't really understand a system, and we who did understand systems varied from those procedures and schedules as indicated by the reality of a situation. My goal with Noah and Brooks is that they develop a good understanding of "how things work" so that they can do what Mike and Josh do (manage their own lives on a day to day basis and accomplish what matters to them), but to get there they need routines and order.

God teaches me the same way. He is the Good Shepherd Who causes me to rest when I need rest and causes me to graze on good food and drink from safe water. He restores my soul.

Although He doesn't want me to "grow up and become independent" and be able to do it all without Him (which I do want for my boys!), He does want me to become more and more able to minister to others and to respond to Him. He teaches me TRUTH -- not just cognitive truth, but the kind of truth that trains my hands and mind and heart for the abundant life He desires to give me.

I am learning how to stop setting my goals and schedule and tasks out of my own agenda, and rest in His. And He offers me healthy routines to meet my needs, just as I do my boys. I am learning not to resist, but to use my drive to hold myself in His Presence even when I am feeling like something else is more compelling.

And -- like I do with Noah and Brooks -- even when I find something else compelling and resist His good routines and care, He uses wisdom in choosing when He scoops me up and compels me toward peace and health and in choosing when He allows me to play the prodigal. He is a flexible Father . . . just as good systems analysts are flexible and not stuck on elementary procedures and schedules, because they know the truth of how things work.

So tonight I will rest in His generosity and in His wisdom and in His control.

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