10/19/2015

To-Doism Part Two

In To-Doism Part One, I wrote about how, in the pursuit of doing everything right and getting everything done, we miss out on the point of life: Jesus. We forget to breathe, we forget to trust, and we forget to sit at Jesus' feet like Mary because we were rushing around like Martha. If you haven't read Part One yet, check it out! 




           I don't know about you, but the Mary life sounds wonderful! I really want to live like Mary who just sat at the feet of Jesus, content even in the chaos. But here is where I get confused. Does living like that mean throwing responsibility in the wind? What about hard work? What about giving Jesus the gift of our life lived for Him? These questions pop into my head, and instead of ignoring them in order to feel free, I want to answer them in order to understand freedom

And this is what I discovered: and. 

I know, I know. I don't make sense at the moment, but hear me out. We don't have to choose. It isn't either sit at Jesus' feet or work for His kingdom. It isn't rest in Jesus or do schoolwork. There's an and in there, a while in between the two stances. We sit at Jesus' feet so that we can work for His kingdom with the right motivation. We rest in Him while we do schoolwork. We learn, however hard this is, to leave the self-driven ways of to-doism and learn a new way: Jesus. 

I'm tired of speaking in vague terms that inspire but don't transform into action. So, it's time that I gave some ideas on how to combat to-doism and start living a life seated at Jesus' feet while working for His kingdom. This is not an extensive list, nor do I pretend to give five easy steps to a joy-filled life, because it doesn't work that way. Instead, I want to show you how I've discovered sitting at Jesus' feet looks like in real life. I want to give you examples of the hard work that goes into not working so hard that you forget the point: Jesus. And here it goes, here are some things that I do to sit at Jesus' feet in a to-doism world: 

-I start my morning with a little prayer. I may be half asleep and wishing that I could be all-the-way asleep. I may just want to check my phone's notifications and get started with the day, and sometimes, I do those things instead. But I know that more than sleep, more than affirmation, and more than getting everything done that day I need Jesus. And starting the day at His feet sets a good example for the rest of the day. 

-I like to stop for a moment on my way to wherever I'm going and look around. I look at the creation that God has made and thank Him for the beauty all around. I really wish that I did this more often, because what crushes to-doism more than things that are done, ready, and beautiful all in God's timing?

I may or may not have risked my life by taking this picture while driving. Don't try this at home, kids


-I also find that doing something according to the talents God has given me banishes to-doism. Telling a story, drawing a figure, or writing a poem may not feel productive, and that's what makes them so great at combatting to-doism! These creative outlets allow me to breath, live, and refocus on the things in life that motivate me and make me feel satisfied, and when this is done right, it is all to God's glory!

Getting ready for The Nutcracker
-Finding the little quiet moments in the day to pray connects me to a God who is always with me, during "Bible Time" and "school time" and every other part of my day. Because, when I think about it, the whole day is "God's time," because He made time. And so I pray in my car on the way to school, while showering after ballet, or while brushing my teeth at the end of the day. I'm finding more and more times to pray now that I've discovered that every place can be a sanctuary, every place can be a seat at Jesus' feet. And let me tell you, prayer can kick to-doism's butt.

-When I struggled with anxiety in middle school, my dad gave me a wonderful illustration that I never forgot. He said, sometimes I'm so concerned about not worrying that I end up continue to dwell on worrying! It's like trying not to think about red by thinking: don't think about red, don't think about red, don't think about red, when I should really just start thinking about blue. Sometimes, the best cure to to-doism is simply to distance myself from the stress and do something else. That doesn't mean avoid the problem or let go of all responsibility, but sometimes I just need to watch some Netflix or read a book. A renewed mind clears a lot of things up.

-I also find it encouraging to visit with others who understand me and will encourage me. Whether that means talking to my Mom for an hour or reading a book by someone who has a heart going in the same direction as mine, this can give me courage because I know that I don't face these problems alone.

Like at a TobyMac concert!!!! I loved it because it was so oriented on the love of Jesus!


-Listening to music that gives God the glory refocuses my thoughts off of me and my issues and onto a God who is stronger than I could ever imagine. Sometimes I'm just too worn down and tired to form my own praises, so I plug in a Passion album, David Crowder music, or something else honoring to God and let the words fill my heart, replacing the to-doism that once reigned with praise to the King who will forever reign (if you get that reference, bravo).

-And let's face it, sometimes I just need to go to bed. Somehow, I get most emotionally vulnerable at night, and the best thing to do is not stay up late and solve the problem but to go to bed and realize in the morning the simple solution.

Waking up from a nap had like like...


-But nothing satisfies more than God. Nothing. Sometimes I don't believe this, and I try to live life on my own, which never works out very well. But I know that I need God, and that He is peace for my heart and joy for my soul. And so I come to Him.

How do I do that? The above ideas are great, and I find them very useful, but the most straightforward way is to read the Bible. I know that this sounds so simple, and it unfortunately can become just another thing on my to-do list, but to read the Bible is to see the truths of God! To read the Bible is the most simple way to sit at the feet of Jesus. Even if I'm busy and feel rushed while reading it, I still make sure to read some of God's Word because I know that it is better than anything else that I have to do that day and will fulfil me more than checking everything off of my list. I don't always feel the peace, but I live in it. I wrote a blog post about how to study to Bible here if you want to know where to begin or how to understand God's words.

She never distracts me from my studies... (sarcastic voice on)
Honestly, I don't know exactly what this life of sitting at Jesus' feet can really look like. I don't have it figured out not do I resist to-doism all of the time or even most of the time. In fact, I struggled this past week with to-doism, trying to get everything done and yet yearning for rest. I avoided sitting at Jesus' feet until I felt ready and my checklist allowed. I felt rushed, hushed, and generally unjoyful. And that is why I needed to remind myself of Jesus' sufficiency and grace maybe more than any of you reading this needed it. I can't do it. And that's the point. 

Keep living in the grace of God, fellow sisters, and don't let to-doism steal your joy! Let's learn how to sit at the feet of Jesus while we work for His kingdom! 

Comment below which of the ideas on the list you have found helpful in the past or can't wait to try in the future! And do you have any thoughts of to-doism? I truly want to hear them! 

Princess Hannah 

4 comments:

  1. This was so balanced and so helpful!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you so much!
    Something that has helped me recently is to start out all my prayers with thanksgiving. It's pretty much one of the best destressors to look at the bigger picture and realize how insignificant my worries are. Whether it's focusing on all the small blessings in your life or the bigger reality of the cross and who God is, it's always overwhelmingly humbling and encouraging.
    I adored this post, Hannah, and I can't wait to go check out your post on how to study the bible! <3

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    1. Thank you soo much for your comment! Speaking of thanksgiving, I love what you said about being thankful! I need to be thankful always, as the Bible says. So true!

      And I also thank you for the subtle reminder that I hadn't linked the Bible Study post up yet! I now have included a link in this post to my past post about studying the Bible!!!

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  2. I love these tips so much, Hannah!! I especially love your dad's red and blue illustration, that's such a great thing to remember!
    <3

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    1. It is a great thing to remember! Thank-you for the comment!

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