It is so satisfying to look at my daily to-do list and see all the items checked off!
I feel so productive, so put-together, and like all is right with the world. However, when the list is mostly unchecked at the end of the day then I feel the opposite – life is chaotic, nothing makes sense, I can’t keep up. If you’re a planner like me then you probably know what I mean.
I have struggled to find that balance between being well-planned and well-led.
I created a series of daily planner pages that I use to manage my days. These pages have an hourly layout which forces me to be realistic about how much time I have in a day to complete tasks. In addition to these daily pages, I use a weekly planner to create an overview of my week. It lists appointments, some items that absolutely must be done – like grocery shopping – and some other items that I would like to get done but aren’t essential. Each morning, I refer to the weekly overview and ask God to reveal to me what needs to be done that day.
With this process in place, I have days that are super productive and I love those. But then, I have days where there are very few items on the day’s to-do list. That doesn’t seem right to me, so I add in some other tasks to make my day full. But what happens in this scenario is either those extras get side-railed and I’m annoyed, or I complete them and I’m just drained afterwards.
I mentioned in a previous post that I’ve been feeling very overwhelmed lately. This is probably one reason why. It becomes hard for me to trust my to-do list to God when I don’t see all the things getting done.
Soon after that post, I came across the December devotional by Creative Retreat Kits (referral link) called God’s Plans. I opted to use the digital version from their Faithfilled Digitals shop because the physical kit would take about two weeks to arrive in Canada. It was exactly what I needed during this time.
God reminded me that His plans are not only good, they are for good.
Commit your activities to the Lord, and your plans will be established. The Lord has prepared everything for his purpose… A person’s heart plans his way, but the Lord determines his steps.Proverbs 16:3-4,9
His plans are for our own good, the good of others, and ultimately for His greater purpose! And His timing is always perfect! They may not make sense to us because our ways and thoughts are not like His. But we can trust in Him who is good, knows all, sees all, and holds all things together. He’s shown that repeatedly in His word. Yet, there is no better example of all of this than the cross!
And so, I’m learning to surrender my plans and to trust His.
He will surely be gracious to you at the sound of your cry. As soon as he hears it, he answers you… your Teacher will not hide himself anymore, but your eyes shall see your Teacher. And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.Isaiah 30:19-21
I wasn’t able to create a video for the process but the entry itself was very simple. Working in my disc-bound journaling bible, I created a background with some pink acrylic paint, and a diamond-shaped stencil by Illustrated Faith, to mimic the kit’s design. Then, I layered a journaling card with other items from the digitals for my takeaway. I also used some coordinating alphas and enamel hearts by Creative Retreat which I had in my stash. Finally, I added a tab because, as a planner, I’m sure I’ll be needing this reminder as I learn to seek and follow His leading.
As 2020 draws to an end, and we start thinking of the new year with dreams and goals, let’s choose to first seek His will before creating plans of our own. He knows what’s up ahead. And He is faithful and trustworthy to guide us through it!
Joy & Peace, Sister!