Sunday, January 17, 2010

Habits of righteous living

Everyone's heard of the "7 Habits" book. I read this a long time ago. I don't remember too much about it except putting your "to do" list into boxes. My life right now isn't too complicated. I don't worry too much about which box laundry goes in and which box grocery shopping goes in. Though, maybe if I did it would get them done more efficiently. But I digress. The "7 Habits" book was the first time that it stuck to me that the things you want to be doing but aren't are just habits that you haven't cultivated yet.

I used to be really good at the spiritual habits that I want and need in my life. I was one of "those" girls when I was younger. The straight and narrow just seemed to fit me. Sure I stepped a toe or two off, and I wasn't totally convinced that finishing "programs" and earning awards at church made me much better, but think I was pretty much a good girl. Maybe you would call it a "goody two shoes." I've been called that before. Julie blogged about her testimony and I loved hearing it. I love to hear how others gain their testimony. I think I was just born with mine. There is a scripture in the Doctrine and Covenants section 46. It talks about gifts of the spirit. How not everyone has all of the same gifts but everyone has some gift(s). I think that verses 13 and 14 are my verses. "To some it is given by the Holy Ghost to know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and that he was crucified for the sins of the world. To others it is given to believe on their words," I remember talking to one of Jonathon's cousins and she asked if I ever questioned things. It was the first time that I has ever vocalized it and realized that, nope, no questions. Never.

It's my gift.

And let me tell you, thank goodness for that! Really. What if I had had to find out for myself? What if, what if, what if? Let's just say I know God loves and knows me because he keeps saving me from myself time and time again.

But I digress...

We all caught on to the fact that I am a believer in God. I love my Savior and I know he died for me. So the problem is that all of those habits that "good" believers practice daily in their lives have gotten a little rusty in mine. I have 1001 excuses. And a lot of them are good ones. The thing is, I am ready to put away my excuses and start the hard work of cultivating a habit.

And what habits would I like to cultivate?

I'm sure you already know. The basics. Just the basics.

Meaningful prayer.
consistent scripture study.
Acknowledging God in my life.

Not too hard right?


Remember those 1001 excuses? Those aren't too hard. Tossing them out and doing it. And doing it, and doing it until it sticks. That is the hard part. Once it sticks it won't be too bad, but getting to that part is hard work.

So that is my goal. I want to take the next 2 years and work really hard and getting those righteous habits to stick in my life. I don't want to forget, or rationalize or complain because they will just be a part of who I am.

So, what about you? Do you have spiritual habits that stick in your life that nourish your soul? Are you still working on it? What works for you?


Cristy said...

It's really strange when you read your own thoughts and feelings in someone else's blog... I feel so much the same way! Maybe this is just one more reason we are such good friends. I was the other half of your pair of "goody two shoes". I know the Church is true, I know Jesus is the Christ. I'm really good at avoiding the "thou shalt nots". But what about the "thou shalts"? I believe IN Christ, but do I BELIEVE Christ? Do I believe that doing what He says I should do (reading my scriptures daily, saying meaningful prayers, etc.) are really so simple, and do I believe that they should come BEFORE all of the other things that fill my life? Of course they should, but I, like you, need to find a way to make them a HABIT in my life. We can do this. We can do this together. Now everyone who reads this is our witness. (No pressure!) :)
Love you!

Seth and Julie said...

Imagine me and you and Cristy had been assigned to the same dorm back in 1993 when we arrived at SUU. How funny would that have been?

I know we have talked about this before when me and you and Jonathon and Louise discussed gaining a testimony. Even if you have always believed, and bulit your testimony line upon line, it is still yours and you did have to find out for yourself. I think it speaks volumes about your parents because all 5 of their kids know the doctrines of the church and have followed in faith. That's awesome. That is totally what I want for my kids. They can be goody two shoes. Fine by me!

As for righteous living habits...I need to jump on this train with you. At the end of my mission I swore I would never go a day of my life without reading scriptures but OOPS...I have missed a few....hundred. I read and study and plan for Primary but I need more time to just feed my own soul. I get answers the most through the scriptures and I am letting those answers just sit on the night stand way more nights than I should.

I think you are a wonderful example though of living the gospel 24/7. You pray often, I have seen it. You teach your kids well. You stand up for what is right and good in this world. More than most people I know. I think you rock! But I am glad that you are still pushing yourself and not being complacent in your relationship with the Savior.

Was that comment long enough?

Marie aka Grams said...

I love reading the above comments, as I love reading your blog. You are a deep thinker. I loved Cristy's distinction about believing Christ. You know for a fact that I believe His words. They are truth. But I also know I am the big Questioner. I not only need to know, I need to know why and how. And it is that unquenchable curiosity that is my double-edged sword. That curiosity is my gift of the Spirit, and it is my curse as well. I have wished so many times I could accept everything, and believe easily. But alas, that gift was given to you. And I agree with Julie, you are a living example of what is right and good in the world. love you.

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