I have a large whiteboard that hangs in my office, right above a cork board that holds all manner of important documents, like bills to pay, a lanyard from a recent conference, a reminder to go to the dentist this month, and a picture of Anna from Frozen that my toddler painted for me.
There are currently three to-do lists competing for space on that whiteboard. One for work, one for my blog, and one for our home. We have a tendency to start projects around here and forget to finish the small details, so that one is full of exciting things like “finish grout” and “clean closets.”
It’s interesting to look at the three lists and watch which projects I work through the fastest. The “blog” list is shorter but has larger tasks on it because I like to dream big. The “work” list is longest and the “home” list tends to stick around. What I realized is that I tend to tackle first the projects that are on my “get to” list – not my “have to” list.”
I “get to” write a fun #write31days series and link up with Nester so I poured energy and creativity into videos and posts that would go live on my blog every day of October. I was willing to do what it took to get them written in advance so I could spend the month working through the next big dream on the list. I “have to” respond to emails and pay bills, so – while they are always done in a timely manner – they don’t fill me with a holy passion to stay up late and work in my “leftover” hours.
And then I wonder where time with God falls on that list? Do I consider time in the Word a “have to” or a “get to?” What about worship? And if I consider those something I have to do because somewhere along the way someone told me that getting up early in the morning and doing Bible study is the best way to start my day, is that enough motivation to keep me going when the mornings are dark and I’d rather hit snooze?
So I’ve been praying lately, a bit of a scary prayer, asking God to create in me a “get to” holy desire to spend time with Him, in the Word, worshipping. I want it to be the item on the to-do list that becomes so non-negotiable that it comes before all of my own dreaming and planning – and ultimately the place where God’s plan with my life pours out into my own planning. I want my life to be filled with “get to” moments and not “have to” tasks because I can see them all through the lens of blessing and answered prayer.
- That work list? It’s a joy to “get to” do those things because God has answered a prayer and blessed me with a dream job.
- The home list? I can’t wait to “get to” make our home beautiful and safe and inviting for others and our family because God has provided abundantly.
- The blog list? I know that I “get to” share words with others in fun ways because God has given me this skill and He’s using it for His glory.
Listen, friend. We are not on God’s “have to” relationship list – we are His most precious “get to.” You are cherished and beloved. Let’s live like it!