Routine #1: Start the Day With Prayer in the Right Perspective
Prayer is essential to anything that we do in life. In our morning prayer time, we should pray and ask God, "Lord, what do you want to do with me today?" Then, we have to do it.
Many of us wake up praying. We thank God for the day and right after that, we begin asking him for things that we need. Most of us never stop to ask ourselves, "How is what I'm praying for connected to what God wants from me?" Many of us may not think about why we're praying what we're praying. Prayer has become routine and 9 times out of 10 even the words we are praying are the same. Our prayers lack heart-felt connection. But if we really want our prayers to be effective, to be answered, then we have to keep our prayers in the right perspective.
It's good to ask God for our daily needs (physical, emotional, social, etc.) but sometimes our prayers are missing the mark. James 4:3 says, "Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts." Sometimes, the reason we don't get what we're asking God for is because our motive is wrong. We want to be fancy (have it all), but we don't have a heart for godliness. Correct praying requires a posture of always wanting to do things God's way and for God's purpose. These are the kinds of prayers that God answers. Are you asking him to bless you with finances for a new car so that you can only cruise the town or are you asking so that it can help you with kingdom work?
I remember when I didn't have a car and it was very hard to get around. I had to take the bus. I was single parent, working and doing ministry. Catching the bus and it was a headache. I needed a car. So, I started to pray and ask God for a car. I needed my life to get easier so that I could feel more free for ministry. I specifically wanted a car with 3 rows of seats. I was the youth leader in my church and I wanted to help get the youth to special events. God blessed me with a truck that had 3 rows of seats which I'm still driving. When I bought it was used with over 100,000 miles on it. I paid a little over $10,000 for it in 2011. It's now 2019 and the truck is still running well. Time to time I give people rides to or from church. My truck enables me to not only to take care of my family and drive around town occasionally but it helps me to keep doing kingdom work. I bought a used truck but it has operated like new. God answered my prayer and he wants to answer yours. If I had asked for a truck only for my leisure or to show people what I have, I probably would have gotten stuck with a nice looking lemon. But God saw my heart and blessed me with something good. Ask God to help you to keep your prayers in the right perspective and see what blessings will be released to you.
Routine #2: Write Out a to Do List
The bible says without a vision, the people parish (Proverbs 29:18). It's good to write out a schedule for yourself because if you don't, you will end up free-styling your life plan. The problem with free-styling is that life doesn't always flow well when you free-style. It can be unproductive to go through your day not really knowing what direction you're going in. You can do a lot of things "just because" with no purpose. This can waste a lot of precious time and your time is valuable. A good rule of thumb is to make a daily schedule. Write out a schedule from hour to hour that shows what you will be doing from one time to the next. Be sure to make space in your schedule for things that are helping you to work towards your God-given dream. If you have a hard time making a schedule, use this goal chart & schedule as a starting point.
Also, I'm here to help if you need me. Send me an e-mail or comment below. Let's work together. The important thing is that you have a road map for yourself for where you want to go and where you're headed.
Routine #3: Balance Social Media with Face-to-Face Contact
I love social media. It's like the hot thing happening. But you don't want to feel alone on the ledge in life or with your dream. Face-to-face contact helps you to be in tune with real people and it helps you to be real. People can glamorize their life on social media and sit at home in a state of depression. The lonely factor in America is a high 72%. (www.cbsnews.com/news/many-americans-are-lonely-survey-finds/). About 3/4 of people in the United States experience loneliness. That means, if you sit in a group of four people, it's likely that only one of you truly feels connected. The other three are lonely. We need more face time and not the facetime chat through the phone type of time. We need real, across from you, at the table, quality time.
Social media makes you feel more lonely. I would assume that this is because we can often think that the lives of others are better than our own or we just don't see enough people face to face which can give a false sense of friendship. Let's be real. Life isn't always glitz and glam. It's a struggle, it's hard and sometimes you really have to push yourself to keep going. We need each other to support one another and lift each other up. Ecclesiastes 4:9 says "Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour (KJV)." Two people can share ideas, counsel each other, spend time together, form a real friendship, share resources, share knowledge, fight together, cry together, and succeed together. They give each other muscles. A real friend helps to strengthen you. That's a friend. The best way to make friends and keep friendships alive is through face-to-face contact. You can easily spend three- plus hours on social media but cut some of that time and spend an hour having lunch with a friend. It's good to have social media but you have to have a balance. Too much of anything is never good.
Meditate on Proverbs 27:17
"Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend (KJV)."
Different people may have different suggestions for effective routines that help you to move forward in your goals. The ones I've given here are a few that I have found useful. I hope that they give you something to think about and that you put one or more of these into action. Let me know how they work in your life. If you have other things that have worked for you, please share a comment. I'd love to see what has helped you to keep moving forward. Share and share alike.
God bless you,