‘Daddy, let’s pray 2020!’ My almost-four-year-old-son shouted from the dining table. He didn’t get my attention until he repeated the same statement for the fifth time. He can be persistent.
Pray2020 is a global prayer initiative where my wife and I, together with everyone involved with the organization we serve in, take some time everyday at exactly 20:20 (8:20 p.m.) to trust God for the raising of 10 Christ-centered million multiplying disciples by the year 2020.
This reminder from my son happens whenever the alarm on my wife’s phone goes off at 8:20 p.m., and there is no move from me or my wife to ‘pray 2020’. He sure does a good job as a backup alarm.
I cannot boast of consistency with this discipline of prayer. The alarm goes off, my ears hear it but my mind does not register it. Because I am busy. At other times, I was reminded, but since I didn’t feel like praying, I let the moment slip. Sadly.
It is true that one cannot be 100% consistent 100% of the time. Yet inconsistencies in our personal disciplines stifles personal and spiritual development. Being frequently inconsistent is injurious.
I am reminded of areas where I am not as consistent as I should be:
- Praying As A Family: It is said that the family that prays together stays together. I agree. Leading my family of five to read God’s word and pray daily is the most critical discipline. It is also, probably the toughest discipline to maintain currently. We have scheduled it over and over between 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. Currently, the pendulum has swung back to 8 p.m.
- Family Movie Nights: Friday night is movie night in our home. After the movie, the children get to spend the night in our room (a delightful treat to which they always respond with glee). This is one action step my wife and I agreed on to spend quality time together as a family. Sadly, we have not been consistent. Though the children get their treat of sleeping in our bed, we have missed watching movies together for two Fridays now.
- Working out: Lately, this is the area where I have been the most inconsistent. My goal is 30 minutes jog six days a week. I miss some days, other times I spend more or less than the 30 minutes scheduled.
- Reading: ‘There are worse crimes than burning books. One of them is not reading them.’ This statement of Joseph Brodsky’s, a Russian Poet and Essayist, never ceases to bug me whenever I am not meeting my reading goals. For 2017, my goal is two books per month. Currently, I am reading my tenth, instead of the sixteenth.
- Writing & Blogging: Two of the ways I unwind is to unload the contents of my mind through writing, and sharing same via my blog. My blogging goal is one blog post per week – schedule it on Sunday for publishing on Monday by 9 a.m. Current reality: It’s almost 1 p.m. on Monday and I am still writing this post.
To improve my writing, my goal is to spend 30 minutes daily, at 9:30 p.m. to write (free flow, no editing or even pause to think) five hundreds words.
Yes, I am not as consistent as I should be; you cannot always be consistent all the time. You will have those times when things beyond your control make your ‘sacred’ schedule go awry.
But for the circumstances you can control, the things that depend on you, exercise discipline. I learnt several years ago that discipline is doing what you ought whether you feel like it or not.
“Discipline is doing what you ought whether you feel like it or not.”
I cannot be 100% consistent 100% of the time, but I have resolved to make my inconsistencies infrequent.
I can be consistent. You can be consistent. We should be consistent. It is a critical for success.
In which areas have you been inconsistent lately. Please share.