Anytime it takes me an entire half hour to write out my to-do list for the day, I know it’s a day I’m likely in for some hullabaloo. That’s what hullabaloo happened yesterday. I’m not the most organized cookie on the block. The to-do list helps keep me from wasting my day flitting here and there without accomplishing the things that are most vital. So I built my list and numbered each item in order of importance. Okay, since organization is not my best thing, the list was on a napkin. But at least I made it. In a few hours I had a couple of items checked off with about a dozen more to go. Still overwhelming, but I was making progress.
I figured I could make faster progress if I had coffee, so I went to whip up a pot. Here’s my to-do list tip for the day: If you’re going to put your to-do list on a napkin, at least make sure you put something on top of it so it doesn’t float off the desk. By the time I got back with my coffee, the dog had run away with it. She was under the table in the dining room. Shredding.
The next part of the hullabaloo involved an intense chase scene. I fished most of the list out from under the table and a few pieces out from between LuLu’s molars. A half hour spent on a list that was suddenly coleslaw.
LuLu was trying to look innocent. Maybe she was even trying to help me. No to-do list means nothing to do, right? Isn’t a good shredding even better than a few checkmarks? Still, the list of all the work I was trying to accomplish at home was dog chow. The dog really did eat my homework.
It was a good reminder, though, that there are times when all those things on the to-do list need to give way to things that are most vital. It’s always a good test for me when I have deadlines up to my eyebrows and I get a call from a friend who needs a listening ear. Or even when my kids want to play a game. Am I willing to shred my own agenda when the Lord might have a different one in mind? If there’s something that will bring him glory that’s not on my to-do list, am I willing to trade my list for his?
Colossians 3:2 says to, “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” Then a few verses later, we’re given this reminder: “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.”
Whether in word or deed, whether on a napkin or over the phone—or even playing tiddlywinks—I want my agenda to ever and always line up with his.
Of course, we’ll have trouble playing tiddlywinks. LuLu ate them. I think she thought they were baked beans—which I’m guessing she thought would go well with the coleslaw.
RHONDA RHEA / contributing columnist