every promise kept nurtures your integrity

this message (Part 2 in our time management series) started out about how to over come the problem of procrastination in our life. And you can find tonnes of good tips online about how to develop the right techniques. But this is a look at something more fundamental.

Here is a summary:

First just to find the context you need, close your eyes and consider, the things you put off last week. How about last month, last year, how about the big things you have avoided resolving or achieving in your life so far? When you reflect on those points how do you feel?

Ever watch Modern Families? There is a classic catch phrase, every time the Dad, Phil, runs up the stairs: ‘must fix that step.’ He says it every episode, as if he is saying it for the first time, and like he is really making a mental note.

I had a broken step recently. It was actually a broken toilet seat. After looking at it slowly get worse for months and after being asked by my eldest son (the diligent one) to fix it 20x, I pulled up as I drove past a Wickes DIY store, and bought a new seat. The rush, the pride…as I stepped back in the bathroom that afternoon having got straight down to work on returning home with the new seat, having worked out how to unscrew the old one and attach the new one.

When our ideas our intentions are realised it feels great.

Of course when you and I have a good idea it does tend to inspire us. It gives us hope. (not talking about the toilet seat now.)

When you come up with a big idea it gives you a lift. But if the idea just stays an idea, the inspiration wears off.

In the end if we never get round to making things happen, the feeling of hope is replaced by an uncomfortable feeling – regret. 

Another angle:

When you make a promise to another person you are hopefully sure you wanted to make it. You tend to be serious about following through. But are you as good at following through with the promises that you make to yourself? Does everything that goes down on your TODO list get treated like a promise. If it is you will find your pencil hovering cautiously before you add another task to your week, or your day.

A promise you make to your self is just as important as one you make to another person, because you are just as important.

When we break promises to our self we feel just like when someone else breaks a promise to us; disappointed.

When we keep breaking our personal promises our self esteem starts to go down. We become cynical.

WHY IS THIS A PROBLEM? Why can’t you and I just accept happily our ‘broken promise reality’?

We are designed to become people of integrity. It’s the way God intended us to be. We are created in the image of a creator whose thought and action are one, so when we are out of sync with that image we instinctively feel something is wrong.

Good time management is an example of mind and body unity which is what the Divine Principle explains as being the way to fulfil the first blessing God gave us: to be fruitful.

God does not put things off, least of all the difficult things. And he asks those close to him to do likewise.

No wonder when Jesus taught his disciples (and all of us) to pray, he prayed this prayer:

“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.

Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven….”  Matthew 6:9–13

What ever nice ideas we have about faith need to be turned into actions in real time.

Managing your time well means managing your life well.

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About simoncooper

working at 43LG church community in West London

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