The List of Three
It was a normal conversation with my sister. We were discussing how amazingly busy each day seems to be. In fact, the topic of 'busy' almost comes up as many times as the weather with many friends and acquaintances.
But, this time the conversation took a turn.
I was not proud of this litany of daily accomplishments - I was looking for relief. So, after listening to my lament of "to-do's", she asked me, "Do you make lists?" This question was not out of the ordinary to me. I have been told to make lists to keep up with daily minutia since I was in my teens reading Seventeen magazine. So, I was not surprised at where the conversation was heading. But, that was where we veered off the normal path. Her second question came as a surprise -
"Have you ever heard of The List of Three?"
Now, I really don't know if she had read about this idea somewhere or if this was her idea (she is wise enough, for sure), but I had never heard of it.
She continued, "Tomorrow, choose three things - just three to put on your list. Then, when you are done with those three things, you have accomplished what you need to get done for that day. Relax and celebrate."
I sat looking at her to see if that was all there was. Yep, that was all there was. I set my coffee down. For all of you 'Martha's' out there, you will understand my next question. "Would those three things include work, my house chores, and family?" Because, if they do, that is all that will be on the list every day of my life! "Well," she said, "work is a must-do, so we won't put that on the list, but as for house chores and family, choose one specific thing for each day and just do that one thing. Number 3 on your list can be anything else you believe really needs to be done. Do it. Then, relax.
I have to tell you, this has been a real challenge.
I have learned a few things about myself on this new path. One, I have been setting myself up to do Superwoman's work, and have not left time for much needed awake-time rest. Which in turn, leaves me speaking short with those I love. I have learned that I tend to 'guilt' myself into many different projects, and this leaves me feeling weary rather than energized. I have learned that I was, many times, not wanting to get out of bed in the morning, because the whole day was already overwhelming me. And, I have learned that I have had to have some 'worthiness conversations' with myself.
Just being real with you.
I have also learned that when I choose just three things, many of the other things I had on my long list seem to take care of themselves, or at least, wait until tomorrow or the next day or the next month. I have learned that the quiet times are full of meaning and purpose. This is true worship, and true worship is NEVER wasted time. I have learned to see the 'leftover' part of the day as a time to be thankful for getting to do some things just for fun, or thankful for just getting to 'be', with a genuinely grateful heart. And, I have gone to sleep without the burden of guilt for what I didn't get done that day, which has allowed me to wake up with more genuine energy.
What does your list look like today? Without any guilt, I wonder if you could ponder The List of Three in your own life? And, as I think of it, 'Three' is truly a significant number. If you are putting your trust in The Three, They will most definitely make your path straight.
Proverbs 3:6 - "Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take."(NLV)