The first week in August is Simplify Your Life Week.
Do you dread the start of school and all the extra activities that go with it? This week is the perfect time to stop and assess your family’s priorities, schedule, and responsibilities.
It’s time to evaluate your must-dos, need-to dos, and want-to dos.
Before the busyness and craziness have the opportunity to overwhelm you, let’s look at the best way to start the process of simplifying your life so you can enjoy it more.
5 Things You Can Do to
Bless and Simplify Your Life
1. Accept that You Can’t Do It All!
I’ve struggled with a desire to please people most of my life. Now it’s a good thing to want to make other people happy. But the truth is, it’s impossible to be and do everything for everybody. God equipped you and me for this specific time and this place to accomplish His plans and purposes. That’s it! We weren’t created to do it all for everyone!
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.Ephesians 2:10
2. Pray – Ask God to Guide the Simplification Process
I believe God wants us to live with wisdom and experience His peace. I don’t have either one without His Spirit’s help and guidance. If we truly believe that He has established plans and purposes for us then it’s important to trust that He will guide us and help us accomplish them when we SEEK His will.
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.Philippians 4:6–7
3. Make a List of Must-Dos, Have-To-Dos, and Want-To-Dos . . . Focus on What’s Most Important
Grab a blank piece of paper and make three columns. Must-dos are non-optional responsibilities, appointments, and events (school, work, doctor visits, etc.). Have-to-dos are tasks, errands, and activities that are done weekly, bi-weekly, and monthly. And want-to-dos are the things you and your family do for pleasure each week.
Remember Jesus said that what’s most important is our love for God and love for people.
“The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” ~ Stephen Covey
4. Make a List of the Areas Where You Can Ask for Help
I’m not very good at asking for help. Just ask Rev. I have a tendency to believe that I’m able to do more than I can. But I’m learning that asking for help when I need is the wise thing to do. And when you and I deny the people around us the opportunity to help, we may be blocking the very thing God had purposed for them that day. So stay aware of your limitations and don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Physical. Mental. Emotional. Spiritual. Whatever the reason, ask for help.
Don’t be shy about asking for help. It doesn’t mean you’re weak; it only means you’re wise.
O Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help.Psalm 86:5
5. Write White Space Into Your Day.
Start small if you must, but block out two or three 15-30 minute blocks of time to do nothing. Plan to use the time to pray, read, walk outside, rest, etc.
Then Jesus said, “Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.” He said this because there were so many people coming and going that Jesus and his apostles didn’t even have time to eat.Mark 6:31
Let’s pause to pray together and ask for God’s help and guidance as we simplify our lives for His glory.
A Prayer to Simplify Your Life
Father, You created order in this world. Your Word says that for six days “evening passed and morning came” and You created. And You “looked over all [You] had made, and [You] saw that it was very good!” (Genesis 1:31) Then it says “God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy because it was the day when He rested from all His work of creation.” (Genesis 2:2) You are God, always aware, always involved, always active . . . we’re not and You want us to take a day each week to rest and intentionally connect with You.
We need the blessing of rest so we are able to serve You well and accomplish the plans and purposes You have for us.
Father, please forgive me for believing I can do it all. Forgive me for failing to ask for help when I need it. Forgive me for failing to get the rest I need and that You want for me.
Please guide me and show me the best path for me. Help me identify my strengths and weaknesses and admit that I am not created to do everything. Please give me the patience I need as I simplify my life and please give my family patience as we figure this out together. I give myself to You. Please help manage my time in a way that will give You glory. Amen.
One more thing that will help you start the simplification process…
Write a Personal Mission Statement
Writing a Personal Mission Statement will help to give you a clear and intentional sense of the things that are most important to you. It will help you determine your values and goals, and define who you are and how you will live.
“The most effective way I know to begin with the end in mind is to develop a personal mission statement or philosophy or creed. It focused on what you want to be (character) and to do (contributions and achievements) and on the values or principles upon which being and doing are based.” ~ Stephen Covey
May God bless you this week as you simplify your life and celebrate God’s grace, mercy, and love.
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