I am an occasional list-maker. Being a reasonably spontaneous person, I'm ready to be blown along by the idea of the moment. This also means I am often at the mercy of the urgent rather than the important. (If you've read Stephen Covey, I struggle to be in the important/non-urgent quadrant.)
Sometimes I reach the point where I despair, feeling that I never get anything done. Then I make a list of all the plans, ideas, wishes, must-dos and inspirations whirling around in my brain. It actually helps me sort my thinking. Then I can leave the list and came back to it after a couple of weeks and I usually see some progress.
I do make mental lists when I prepare for my day, but going back to them becomes a reminder of either my unrealistic thinking or my failure to complete. Sometimes I find that the list makes me neglect the really important things. I do my chores, but miss out on listening to stories and playing games. "I'll be there when I finish this..."
I so easily get caught in the trap of seeing value in what I can do rather than who I am.
Lately, I am trying to use a different list. I have started a 'To Be' list. What sort of person do I want to be today... It is time to focus on the how rather than the what, the process rather than the content.
It is crystal clear what goes on my list. And they are on my list every day so I get longer to work on them.
Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
Now, whatever I do, it is significant because it is a way to reflect God's nature and show his love. My failure is no longer that I don't do enough. Instead I am on a journey with a bigger goal in mind - the spirit of God shaping me, directing me, allowing me to participate in God's nature.
His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.
Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
2 Peter 1:3-4
How am I going to be divine today?*
*The question, phrased this way, comes from a talk by Di Warren at EQUIP 2010