I love lists. This is not due to stellar organizational skills but born of remarkable lack of memory. I also love makings lists because it helps me feel a sense of accomplishment in a world where sometimes the sun rises and sets and I often feel like I have done nothing but keep everyone in my care alive.
I have many lists I'm working off of now. There's the never-ending to-do list. There's the ever-changing grocery list. There's our adoption homestudy list. There's currently a school supply list.
The funny thing about lists are the items remaining when most of been marked off. What is it about those lingering items that are so tough? That phone call or errand on my to-do list that I'm just dreading and keep putting off. The item at the grocery store that I just can't seem to find. The item on the homestudy that seems impossible to get. That random school supply item that is out-of-stock.
The Bible seems to include many lists. Starting with the systematic creation of the world and continuing with the 10 Commandments.
One of my favorite lists is:
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control."
Galations 5:22-23, NIV
I also love the passage about love:
"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres."
I Corinthians 13:4-7, NIV
What fabulous lists outlining a life that glorifies God. How convicting these lists can be when Christ is not evident in my words or actions.
When my children make poor choices, sometimes the consequence for that action is that they write a scripture verse pertaining to the poor choice. They write the verse numerous times based the child's age (thus my 10 year old would write the scripture 10 times). I have found it to be a great way to correct a child, especially at those times that I'm about exhibit a lack of "peace, patience, and self-control." It forces me to go to the Bible for answers and actually calms my child down as he/she sits and ponders those words.
Anyway, the above two "lists" from the Bible are verses used a lot. My kids know when I ask if they've been "patient and kind" or their behavior shows "they have been easily angered and are keeping record of wrongs" that some quality time with I Corinthians 13 is on the horizon.
Just like my daily lists, I have those lingering items in my daily walk that often are the last to be checked off. It isn't until I remember to go to the Author of those lists for help that I'm truly able to live out Galations 5 and I Corinthians 13.
The dessert of song is "Beautiful Lord" by Leeland. It's the perfect song for when I know I need God's help with those toughest items on my list. (And I just couldn't resist adding a Leeland song after some of his tunes reappeared on Playlist.com.)
Have a great week!
More Than Lots,