Every December we all do it. We think about the new year and what we need to change. We think about exercise, diets, habits, relationships, meal planning, decluttering “that room” or “that closet”, family time, financial planning, etc. I do it every year, and every year I fail. It’s not that I don’t try, I really do, but life just seems to happen all the time! This year I decided to try a different approach. I decided to revisit things that have really worked for me in the past and revive them. Here are a few of my New Years Revisitations!
1. Pray for the day before ever getting out of bed.
My day starts with a precious (albeit very loud) four year old climbing into bed with me and snuggling. I wouldn’t change that for the world, but I am going to refuse to pick up my phone and scroll through Facebook with him. Instead I, am going to pray with him about our day. By doing this, I am setting a tone for the day. I am giving the day to God before I let the distractions take over. I used to do this when my boys were little and somehow it began slipping out of my routine. I promise you, your days are better when you start them with a little “Thank you Jesus, and I thank you for this day”. It changes things.
2. Write down my prayers.
Ever see a post on Facebook asking for prayers and there are 200 likes for the post. I want to believe that all those people really did stop and pray for the situation. I know that I try to make a point to stop scrolling and bow my head for this friend. The problem is, after that initial prayer, I often forget to follow up! A few years ago I had a prayer book (thank you to the character Aibileen Clarke in “The Help” for the idea) and I wrote down every person that I was praying for. Then, I had a second baby and the habit and the prayer book disappeared. These days I am trying a mash up of prayer book meets “War Room”. I have post it notes all over the house and when I see someone or something that needs prayer (yes there is a stack next to my computer for Facebook), I write it on a post it and then stick it on the wall. Not coincidentally, the wall where the post its end up, is in my laundry room. (No one else goes in there. Trust me.) It’s just God, me, my prayers, and the dryer humming in the background.
*The cross in the picture was given to me by my sister. It not only reminds me to pray for my post it peeps, it also reminds me to leave my worries at the cross!
My oldest son is a blessing in every way but has ALWAYS been a challenging child. As a baby he screamed for hours from colic and as a toddler he could throw down a tantrum like Toby Mac throws down rhymes. As a result, I had to learn to walk away often and just breathe. Take a moment, count to ten, ask God to help you see the joy, and just breathe. As my children have gotten older, there is no less need to take that breathe and that moment. It just seems that I have resorted to other means of dealing with frustration, and they are NOT working my friends. Taking a moment to refocus is a much better way. By stepping away from situations when we are frustrated, we give ourselves a moment to calm down, refocus, and keep from saying things that we always regret!
So how about you? Are there any good habits out there that you have left along the side of life’s road? I would love to hear about them and how you plan to revisit them!
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” Lamentations 3: 22-24