Every day I try to start with some clear commitments. Things like limiting my use of digital entertainment, making time for regular prayers, actively avoiding temptation where I can, etc. As I have shared before, though, sometimes I rattle those commitments off without really thinking about them, while other times I am able to be intentional in the ritual, and really feel the commitment as I make it.
Even when I make a commitment sincerely, though, a day is a very long period of time. Once committed, it is easy to dismiss the first distraction, perhaps more difficult to turn from the second, some compromises are made on the third, and resolve is entirely forgotten come the fourth.
This happened to me just yesterday, where I gradually fell from my commitments and reverted back to a default, auto-pilot mode of life. I felt it happen, and having already fallen, found it very easy to say “well, that’s the entire day gone down the toilet. I suppose I can always try again tomorrow.”
A few hours later I was playing on my phone and felt a prick of my conscience to stop and engage more with the life around me. At first I dismissed it, the day was already ruined after all. Tomorrow.
Then the feeling came back, and with it the thought that I had forgotten myself. I had had a bad moment, and from that had decided to give up on myself for the entire rest of the day, and God was very not okay with that.
God was asking me to come back to myself, to recognize that no matter how many mistakes I had made, and no matter how recently they had been, my heart was still within reach and I was still worth fighting for. God wasn’t trying to take the phone out of my hands, He was trying to take out the shame that was making me hide. He was trying to awaken the real me.
So I put down the phone and thought “alright, I’ll be myself then. I’ll be myself right now.”