Two days ago I started over. About 6 months ago I had intentionally stopped writing each day because I felt I needed to re-align my priorities. Life was full and so writing was the one thing that had to go.
I could have kept on posting each day but it would have been a self indulgent endeavour. In order to do it I would have had to neglect family, friends and other more important things. Daily writing had become a selfish obsession and hence I had to let it go.
You may have noticed that I didn’t post anything yesterday. I know that if you want to build a loyal audience the more you post the better and the more consistently the better. But this time around I intend to approach writing differently. This time I’m doing my best to keep it in perspective. To keep it at the right level in my overall priorities. It’s something I enjoy to do, hopefully is helpful to other people but can’t replace the people I live with and do life with.
That’s why I intentionally didn’t write yesterday.
It goes against all the rules but for me personally the best thing to do yesterday was to hold back. It might sound crazy but it was ridiculously difficult not to cave in and post something. All throughout the day my subconscious mind kept reminding me that I hadn’t posted anything. In some strange sense that feeling of having to do it was ruling my mind.
I don’t want things other than Christ to rule my thinking.
As I went to bed last night I was still considering quickly writing something and getting it posted. That way I wouldn’t have missed a day. That way I could avoid people wondering what happened. Instead, I chose to over come the pressure, all be it self imposed and leave it a day. In doing that I overcame the temptation to be ruled by what people may or may not think of me starting over and then missing a post the very next day.
I don’t intend to miss days, I really want to write. But more than that I want to be Christ-like and so if it means intentionally disciplining myself in the process then I’m going to do my best to do that.
I know I’m not alone.
In conversations with friends I realise that self-discipline is difficult for everyone. It’s something that we all seem to struggle with, each in our own area of weakness. Even the Apostle Paul struggled in this area at times. In Romans 7, speaking about the law, he says;
We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
We all struggle with the self discipline required to do the right thing at all times. In Christ we are new and as we grow in His likeness, by the Holy Spirit, we can start to overcome. It’s a life long journey of constantly surrendering every area of life. I wouldn’t call writing a post yesterday a sin, but for me it was a necessary discipline that I hope will help me in other areas of life. Both in doing AND not doing things.
I never thought that NOT writing a blog post would be self-discipline. As it turns out for me it was and perhaps strangely will be again.