I think the Lord speaks to me when I deliver papers. He speaks in a still small voice, in the quiet of the night under a blanket of stars. Sometimes I think I have the radio too loud for me to hear. The God that I serve is not pushy. He is not rude. He is not forceful. But, at the same time, he will do what he needs to in order to get my attention. I have been delivering newspapers since the end of January. I didn’t want to. In fact, Derick and I had a route about 4+ years ago, and we said when we quit that we would never do that again! We would have to be destitute to do that again! Well, here we are, delivering papers again, just to make ends meet. I should be thankful. I am thankful! I am thankful that I have the physical ability to deliver papers. I am thankful that Derick and I are both driven to provide for our family. I am thankful that I have a reliable car with which to deliver the newspapers. I am thankful for the exercise. And today, the Lord asked me to be thankful for the solitude.
I have trouble, sometimes, finding the time to do the things that I need to do, especially the things that really need to be done everyday. Sometimes I lack that sense of urgency. That could be anything from reading my Bible, to cleaning the bathroom, to just picking up after myself. This is a struggle for me. I also struggle with teaching my kids to have this sense of urgency about getting things done, even homework at night. Its hard to teach something that you really know nothing about. So, how do I learn to have this sense of urgency, this need to keep things neat and in order. I realized today how the Lord wants me to learn to spend time with Him everyday. It is through delivering papers. I am past the point of keeping my eyes glued to my route list everyday. I basically have it memorized. Well, enough that I can put my mind on other things… like listening when the Lord is speaking.
Like I said in the beginning, the Lord speaks to me when I deliver papers. Last night, I had a melt down over the state of my house. It is a disaster and I would be embarrassed for anyone to see it right now! I feel so overwhelmed that I just cannot move forward. I feel like no one in my house cares, even though I know that isn’t true. I remember my mother having that same complaint as I grew up. She wanted a clean house. She wanted to know what to do to keep it clean and she wanted to know what to do to teach us to do these things. I know that I have complained about my messy house before. I seem to make worthless promises to myself that I’m gonna keep it clean this time. This time will be different. But, it never is.
This morning I realized, its not just that I want it to be clean. I want to be a good steward with what the Lord has given me. Maybe that’s the key. I need to view this house and everything in it as belonging to the Lord. Essentially it all does, but do I really believe that? Do my actions suggest that I believe that? I want to believe, but my actions definitely don’t show it!
So, what do I do about it? I need a plan. A realistic plan. A short term plan that I can slowly expand as the Lord teaches me good stewardship. Two verses came to my mind this morning when I thought about how overwhelmed I get. The first is Psalm 30:5b which says, “Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.” The second verse is Lamentations 3:22-23, “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” God will bring me new mercy and joy every morning! Whatever happened to my plan the day before, today is new! His mercies are new! His joy is new! And they are mine for the taking!
The first thing I need to do, is make sure that my kitchen is always clean. That is the first thing people see when they walk into my house. If the first impression is a messy kitchen, then who cares about the rest of the house. The next thing I need to do is use my time wisely, starting with the hours of 3:00am to 7:00am. I usually leave my house at about 2:50am to go pick up my newspapers. If the papers are on time, I am delivering between 4:00 and 5:30am. A few months ago, I wrote out Romans 8 on note cards, fully intending to memorize it. Well, I got sidetracked and it didn’t happen. I can’t really sit down and read a few chapters in my Bible at that time, but I could easily spend time meditating on small passages and memorizing scripture while I’m walking the streets of Peoria. I think I’ll dig out those note cards again.
The next thing I want to do, is help my kids to learn scripture too. Verses like, “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.” Colossians 3:23 or “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” I Corinthians 10:31. I want them to know that every gift is from God alone, and it is our responsibility to take care of it and appreciate it.
And last, I’m going to try to blog about the things that the Lord speaks to me about while I am delivering papers. Most days, I go back to bed after I’m done delivering. I love to blog though, even if I am the only one that reads it. It helps to clear my head. Oh, yeah, I’m also going to limit my time on the computer. There are always more important things to do that get on Facebook!