“Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, ‘He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us?’ But he gives more grace.” (James 4:5-6)
I forget easily. Priorities set in motivated moments disappear like popping soap bubbles. Poof! They’re gone! How can I prevent the most important aspect of life from slipping away like water down a bathtub drain? What prompts can I engage to direct me toward the most important portion of my day?
I wake and press bare feet to the floor. A jumbled array of thoughts jingles in my brain like loose change in need of paper bank rolls to keep them stacked and accountable. I splash water to rouse a sleepy face and swish soap across a wrinkly landscape. Soil stains remain within from yesterday’s stumbles, and splashes of shallow thinking have left rings around my soul. Cleansing routine, remind me to seek a clean heart, to wash away yesterday’s grime before another thought jumps into line. Wash me, Father, in the water that is your Word. Wipe away the residue, and let my heart begin this day aligned with you.
Hangers hold out options, and I dress to greet the day’s demands. Will you not dress me first in grace, slip over my shoulders your merciful ways? Drape compassion and its coordinating kindness as the most visible apparel in my wardrobe. Clasp thoughtfulness and tenderness by my side; make forgiveness and gentleness a part of my look. Creator God, fashion me to appear as your child, bearing the image you designed for me to wear when you thought of me before the world began.
With phone in hand and computer cradled close, I toast bread, grab a mug, and dash to the door. But I leave unfed. I present a malnourished soul to the world and wonder why I am easily irritated at the slightest interruption. No fuel exists to withstand the pressures, the provocations, the drudgery. My hungry soul is famished, and my reserves resemble a dried up well. Your Word is food and drink, satisfying and filled to the brim with goodness and grace. I must take in your bountiful spread, available like mounds of artisan bread to fulfill and restore. As I eat, you promise I will hunger for more.
Time alone in your presence is the finest call I can make. Regular steps of obedience will open the door for the Spirit to convict and conform. Dressing for the day means to first meet with you, my Lord, to seek your wisdom to make me wise, your strength to override my weakness, your peace to infuse the muddled corners of my chaotic world.
Elizabeth A. Mitchell