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January 22, 2009

So I was thinking this morning, are routines good or bad?  Are they both?  Sometimes we say, “well as soon as I get back into my routine I’ll be fine”, but we also say, ” I’m just stuck in a routine and I need to break out of it.”  I think it may be safe to be down the middle here.  

Sometimes it is hard to do things well or consistently without a routine.  Working out is that way, at least for me it is.  If I can get my self into a routine of working out consistently (whatever it may be) then I find it much easier to stay at it for much longer.  Yes life does happen to break our routine sometime, but if I don’t get myself back into my routine then it is hard for me to keep going.  There have been several times in my life that reading the Bible has been that way.  If I break my routine then I forget…I know that sounds bad, but it happens.  I know some people that have a routine, or “process” in the morning and at night for getting out or into bed (yes you, baby).  There is nothing wrong with that.  Sometimes doing things in order helps us not forget things along the way.  You know.  Step 1 leads to step 2 which leads to step 3 and so on.  I would say those are good routines.  Right?  Maybe its just a routine of eating better.  I know that when I get myself into a routine of eating healthy it makes it much easier to stay that way.  My boy Terrace always used to say “if you dress nice, you test nice.”  While I personally believe that to be crap, it works here.  If you shop healthy, you eat healthy.  

Well what about bad routines?  Maybe a bad routine would be consistently being lazy at a certain part of the day.  Or maybe the dates you take your significant other on are always exactly the same.  I would say those could be routines that anyone should break out of.  We could be more productive during that part of the day or be more spontaneous with our significant others and keep some of that mystery and surprise in the relationships that we all know the girls like (the guys might too, but you may be hard pressed to get them to admit something like that…I don’t know).  I know for people in the church ministry routines seem to be more of bad things.  I think that when church staffs get into routines, that is when things start moving from a true ministry and experience to the state of just going through the motions.  With some jobs that might not be a horrible thing, but I think when we start letting our ministry (ANY ministry…yes even those outside of so called church) become just a job or a paycheck or something we are just supposed to do, that is when we lose.  Maybe we lose relevance.  Maybe we aren’t being real anymore.  Maybe we aren’t reaching the people that we have been called to reach anymore.  

I think it is a scary thing when churches lose the battle of routines.  I’m not saying that we should do church just on the fly and see what happens.  That may work for some people, but I am pretty sure it wouldn’t for all.  But I am saying that we should try things.  Try new things.  Look at the things that you do and see what things you should get rid of.  Our new two time oath saying President Barack Obama said it well in his inaugural speech when he talked about examining the programs that we have.  If they are working we move forward.  If they are not, the programs will end.  I think this is a pretty good mindset for our lives and churches and families as well.  

Maybe you need to get in a routine.  Maybe you need to break out of one.  What are some good or bad routines that you get in?

3 Comments leave one →
  1. justcallmej permalink
    January 22, 2009 1:38 PM

    I would have to say that routines aren’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s the complacency that comes with getting into a routine that can cause problems. We get so used to doing things a certain way that we don’t even think about what we are doing. We just do it. We go through the motions that we taught ourselves. Those repetitive movements can cause us to miss the important things.

    It’s like telling your wife “I love you”. It comes so naturally that sometimes you just say it and don’t even look at her or separate those words from the rest of the conversation. But it means so much to say that to her, that it shouldn’t be routine.

    As it pertains to church or our relationship with God – everyday with Him is a new day and each day we should seek to be more like Him. We can never be close enough or love Him enough. We should seek more of Him today than we did yesterday. That will keep it from becoming a routine. Instead, each step we take is a new beginning, and without routine.


  2. Kara-Kae permalink
    January 23, 2009 9:38 AM

    I like the stuff about relationships! Better back that up buddy 😉 Loooove you!

  3. Dad(other one) permalink
    January 28, 2009 1:51 PM

    You are right on…coming from the routine king.

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