Creature of Habit

Written by: Ms. O

I am a creature of habit….it is a blessing…and a curse. In some ways…doing the same thing…over and over…again…and perhaps once again…takes the guess work out of life. My kids know me…they know my habits…my tendencies…and can pretty much “call it” before it happens.

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There is no doubt….no matter what time I am supposed to be “somewhere”…I will be there…at least ten minutes early. I can’t help myself. Over the years, I try to hold back…but I find myself looking at the clock…checking my watch to double check the time….and then my cell phone since it is the most accurate. If someone is driving with me…the pressure is on…to make sure they are ready…when I am ready…early.

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I am not a dental hygiene nerd…believe me…but I will say I can count the times on one hand…probably using maybe two fingers…the times I have gone to bed without brushing me teeth. Even my most tired nights…when I drag myself in the door and into bed…thinking…”I’ll just skip tonight…and brush twice in the morning.”…lasts about….oh five minutes…until I roll out of bed…. trudge into the bathroom and fire up the electric toothbrush….so I can go to sleep with a clear conscience.

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Before I go to bed at night…the last thing I do…before I brush my teeth of course…is get my coffee maker ready for the morning. It is set at the same time…no matter what day of the week it is…going off at 4:30 AM…to make sure that when I get up in the morning…I wake up to the smell of…coffee that is ready.  I know I am not the only one like this…after attending UM ARMY…and coming downstairs…early in the morning…to find the coffee ready…and waiting…for me. Okay….maybe for everyone…but I like to think it is just for me. Again, it does not matter how tired I am…the coffee will be prepared….set up…with that lovely illuminated button…that tells me that at 4:30…AM…my coffee will brew.

Living my habits that control my life can make me nuts at times. There are blessings that come from habits though. I am RARELY late for anything….and when I get to where I am supposed to be….early…I can relax…knowing I am where I am supposed to be. When my dentist asks if I brush…I can HONESTLY say YES…cause I know it is true…believe me.  And…there is nothing like that first cup of coffee in the morning…manna from Heaven…and I don’t have to be awake to brew it…it is waiting on…ME!

“Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” Hebrews 10:25

Don’t be shocked….but there have been a few Sundays…that I have not felt like getting out of bed…to go to church.  I lay there…reasoning with God…how “faithful” I am…that not a Sunday goes by…that I am not at church…early….of course.  Surely I have “banked” an excused absence. Then I remember the promise I made with God…years ago…when my kids were little. I knew I could not raise my kids on my own. I knew I needed a “village” to help rear my children. I also knew if I expected them to be faithful churchgoers…then I would also need to be one.  So I made a promise…to be faithful…in my prayers…presence…gifts…and service…(this was before they tacked on “missions”)…when I joined Faith UMC…some 20+ years ago. So, as I lay there…conjuring up some pretty good arguments…for why I deserve to stay home…I feel God beside me…asking me to renew my vows….my covenant…with Him…because once I back slide ….it leads to twice…and so on…and so on…kind of like when I cheat on a diet…and it becomes my habit.

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You know what the crazy thing is?? Once I walk into the doors of the church, I feel like I am home. I look forward to spending time with those who enter those doors with me. I am part of not only this church…but also Christ’s church…and I need to uphold my end. And I reap the benefits…totally…from doing just that…keeping it a habit. Thank you God for my OCD tendencies…that You work so hard to refine…in me.

With God’s love…Ms. O