Smooth Running Life
Habits are good and make life run smoothly. Charlotte Mason (1842-1923) talked about habits being the tracks that we can run our lives on. What is a habit? How would you answer that question? I would say that a habit is something you do, on some level of frequency, without much thought.
I don’t give much thought to buckling my seat belt when I get into a car. I just reach for the seat belt and fasten myself in while I am thinking about something else or talking to someone in the car. I don’t expend much energy at all to getting that task done. It’s a good habit that helps keep me sake.
Step by Step
Conversely, how laborious and tedious it would be if we had to give mental energy to the entire process of brushing our teeth. When we practice the habit of brushing our teeth, we are able to give mental energy to more important things. You might find yourself going over that presentation or lesson plan you are going to give that day. It’s not uncommon for your mind to be engrossed in something totally unrelated to brushing your teeth because it’s a habit. It is second nature to you. You’ve done it for a long time?
Think back to when you first started brushing your teeth. Don’t worry this will be a quick trip down memory lane. When you first started brushing your teeth you had to think about how hard to hold the toothpaste tube, how hard to squeeze the toothpaste tub and how two twist your wrist just right to get that cool swirl on the toothbrush. Often times, you would put too much toothpaste on the toothbrush and end up with a huge mess. Then you got to the brushing of the teeth part and you try to rush through the process. That’s the phase where someone has to watch and make sure you do a thorough job. So many steps to brushing your teeth. Thankfully, you learned to brush your teeth without thinking about,
We all have good habits and unpleasant habits. Even though habits do not take much thought, they impact our lives greatly. If you have a good habit of washing the dinner dishes after you have eaten dinner then you have the wonderful delight of walking into a kitchen with a clean sink every morning. (I’m still working on that one). Making up your bed every morning after you get out of it means you are going to have a neater looking room when you get ready for bed. Those habits make your life more pleasant and easier to manage. I’m sure you can think of other habits that help you throughout your day and your life.
Your habits can also take place in your head. Your thought life is an important part of your life that we all need to pay attention to.
What’s Going On In My Head
Recently, I feel like the Lord has been drawing my attention to my thought life. He had me focus on some negative thoughts I began entertaining. The thoughts centered around a loved one that has some habits that annoyed me, I’m sure you can relate to the reality that those closest to us can irritate us the most. I hear you mothers out there! Oh, there are several dad hands up as well. So, you can relate, good?
As I allowed the negative thoughts to bloom and grown in my head, the Lord arrested my attention and prompted me to think about what I was really doing. There was nothing positive or productive coming from those thoughts. In fact, I sensed frustration and agitation as the thoughts lingered. The alarming thing that occurred to me was that the person wasn’t even present. I was getting annoyed and agitated by thoughts and the person was no where near.
I promptly repented and asked the Lord to forgive me and help me with the thoughts. He, in turn, had me bless the person I was thinking about. He reminded me that “The weapons of my warfare are not carnal but they are mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds” (My paraphrase of 2 Cor 10:4). Our Heavenly Father is a good father and will teach us good things. He will help us form good habits.
What Comes Next!
I am excited to see the long-term fruits that will come a result of taking unhealthy thoughts captive and allowing the Lord to cleanse them. The immediate benefit is that my attitude changed from being ugly to being more pleasant but I am sure there will be more benefits as I allow the Lord to help me tweak my habits.
Now, it’s time for me to hit those dishes.