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Logs vs. reflection: logging off from daily logs

Tried keeping daily logs for my own reference for a few weeks, documenting who I saw, what I did, and so on, but it just ended up being a pain. While I don't like not being able to remember stuff, this cure was more trouble than the disease. If I forget, that's going to have to be OK. Not like I ever looked back at them anyway.

Any pressure I feel to know or remember everything is likely self-imposed. Since I was a kid, one of the only things that ever felt like it set me apart is that I knew stuff. When I rely on that to save me—from disapproval, from feeling inadequate, from not being able to make decisions or fix things—it's an idol. "I don't know" needs to be a much larger part of my vocabulary if I'm to be real, sane, and spend my life doing anything other than answering questions. Sometimes others are going to be uncomfortable with that answer, but I probably think that's a bigger deal for them than it really is. No one is looking to me for salvation, after all, and if they are, they probably need to stop anyway.

Some kind of regular exercise in reflection, however, would be good, keeping my eyes on my life and placing it in perspective. Otherwise, it quickly devolves into a set of appointments and to-dos, and all I want is to be done with them. I need to address questions like these:
  • With whom am I spending time? Who is important to me? How am I loving and honoring them?
  • What's working well? What's failing or falling short? What factors are contributing to this?
  • How am I spending time and money? Does that match my values?
  • Where am I avoiding pain/seeking pleasure in ways that undermine God's purposes and my values?
  • For what am I grateful? How am I expressing my gratitude?
  • Where am I serving? How can I serve better?

I'm already challenged by some of the answers that spring to mind. There's no discipline, system, or magic pill that will make everything work, but getting back to fundamentals and seeking some rhythm seem to be good next steps.


Those are good questions.

I'm pretty comfortable with "I don't know", even though the kids don't always like it... surely Mama must know, because she knows everything! Except how the t.v. works, please go ask your father. :)

I also tend to think if I can pin my life down with lists and schedules, the whole thing will work much better. Oddly enough, this last week, all of that seems to have fallen by the wayside. I haven't felt driven, haven't felt like I have to stick with the schedule or risk everything falling apart. It's been very relaxing.
Often I forget that the schedules and lists are means to an end, and that I have them so I can better adapt and roll with it when the chaos overtakes everything. They have to stay breathable somehow, and the best way that can happen is probably for me to remember that they're not the point.
That's a tough one for me, because any schedule fail tends to be permanent. For instance, I have a "schedule" that dictates that I take the kids for a walk every day. Well, I let the schedule breathe (ha ha) a few times and guess who isn't walking every day anymore??

On the other hand, I'm trying to be more realistic about what I can do. My will says I can do anything I put my mind to... my strength says not so much. I may have strength for the schedule, and fail in my relationships (particularly with the kids), or I can take care of the relationships and let the schedule hang. So... sometimes the dishes and the laundry don't get done when they should, and sometimes that means being late because I'm digging for socks at the last minute in each of the three laundry baskets in the basement. I guess the important thing has become to keep trying. This week, I'm tired. It's not all getting done. I have to be ready to try again next week and not be discouraged that I feel like I never catch up. Having grace for myself in realizing that today's failure isn't crucial helps me to have grace for others.
I relate to the point about a life-time of loving to be the one who knows. "Idol" is a harsh word, but true ... helps me to wake up and smell the coffee.

"Ma ahdri." "I don't know." Will be traveling during January and expect to be using this phrase of my limited Arabic vocabulary quite a bit. Embarrassing, but reality.

The questions you listed are good. Thanks!
It's pretty freeing and vulnerable to admit that I don't know. I'm not as comfortable with it as I ought to be, but that shows me how much, often, and hard I lean on knowing to navigate life. If I intentionally leaned on God even half as often, I'd probably be in great shape.