Friday, August 22, 2008

Practicing What I Preach

Wow - Wednesday was a little exciting over here at Chatty Kelly's blog. Thank you all so much for your positive affirmation! I'm overwhelmed by your support. Even though I know you all would give me tons of tips for Tuesday Tips next week (you'd be scared not too after this week!), I really feel like I'm going to let it go. I don't want to pressure all my girlfriends (YOU!) to come up with a tip, week after week, and I want my focus to be on God. That's what you've come to expect. And He does too!

My oldest daughter takes piano lessons. As she played the "Laughing Song" for her teacher this week, the teacher noted that in one measure, my daughter was coming in on the 3rd beat, instead of the 4th beat. My daughter started again. One-Two-Thr**- whoops, she came in on the 3rd beat again. "Let's count it out loud together" suggested the teacher. One-Two-Thr***. Whoops, again my daughter played on the 3rd beat. It wasn't that she didn't understand to wait. It wasn't that she wasn't trying. (She was trying very hard). But she had been practicing it wrong all week at home, and now she had a bit of a habit to break.

Of course, you know where I'm going with this one. Do you have any habits in your life? We start off in life doing something that we don't realize is wrong. Many people who don't grow up going to church say "Oh my God!" all the time without thinking about it. But once you realize it's wrong (taking the Lord's name in vain) you need to stop. But it isn't that easy. It's a habit.

For me, my independence can be a habit. I grew up in an alcoholic home. I didn't feel cared for, so I learned to rely on myself. As such, I am utterly and completely reliable, and relatively self-sufficient. Ask anyone. I have a hard time asking for help or relying on others. Even God.

If there is anyway I can do it myself, I try. But I'm learning more every day to rely on the one who made me, who knows the number of hairs on my head. Who, when I blog "without him" (Tuesday), makes sure I receive few comments. When I confess and give it to him on Wednesday - 25* comments and counting!

I know who to rely on, and it's not me. I just have a habit to break. And just like my daughter, I'll have to practice, practice, practice, until I get it right.

Psalm 121:1,2 -- I lift up my eyes to the hills—where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.

Matthew 7:24, 25 -- Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.

1 John 4:16 -- And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.

*I just changed the comments number to 25 from 24...luckily I was still awake to read Edie's comment. Imagine if I had left her out AGAIN! And in case you didn't know I write my blogs the night before and set them to auto post in the morning.


Sue J said...

Again, no coincidence....I was reading that book you lent me about pastor Don Piper's journey--90 Minutes in Heaven. Just finished the part where he was in the hospital and came to realize that he had been turning away all of his parishioners and friends, declining their help.

Then, his mentor pastor visited and "spoke the truth in love"--that Don had been hindering the ministry of those who loved him and loved God.

I have definitely not been in Don Piper's shoes, but I understood the point all too well about not allowing others the opportunity to share in my life in some way (to be a witness to "love one another" in the ways that they knew how).

And, you do need to start small--like one measure at a time--and relearn the passage, so you can play beautiful music that others will hear and say, "How Beautiful!"

The Patterson 5 said...

Habits are so hard to break. I think mine is harnessing my tongue,or I guess I should say not harnessing my tongue. Ususally the first thing that pops in my head is what flies out! You witnessed that on Tues.

It is something I pray about but yet it continues to happen. Old habits... hard to break. Continued prayer and dependence on God. Practice, practice, practice. I think you've got the solution! Thanks for the encouragement!

My ADHD Me said...

Are you talking to me? I spend my entire life going one, two, thr...oops.

As for Tuesday Tips. I know you pondered on that. You probably made the right decision. On the other hand, now that I've moved my cups down maybe my 17 year old will stop asking me to get him a drink!

Rebecca Ingram Powell said...

Hey CK,

25! Goodness me!

I remember piano lessons where I just couldn't get it as well--I loved that analogy.

Have you noticed we "fall" into bad habits and we almost never "fall" into good ones? Forming good habits is almost always done on purpose.

Have a great weekend!

Starr said...

I'm with you on the "I'll do it myself" thing. That is a bad habit I need to break. Wow! 25 comments! I would think I had died and gone to comment heaven!!
Love ya,

On Purpose said...

God has used you to teach us all some very important lessons and you have let Him talk through you this week!

HisPrincess said...

Ok...I know you are letting Tuesday tips go, but here is the one tip that we all should have said and we all missed!


How did we all miss that?

Thanks for your support and encouragement over at my blog, which I am changing from His Princess to the Dental Diaries. Just kidding! But it does have a certain ring to it don't you think?

Kay Martin said...

I knew I felt a kindred spirit when I read your posts. Today I see we both are babies BT: Born in Trauma. Another friend of mine was connected to me as we both shared some of the ways God has redeemed us from our "mess" from home and we came up with the BT acronym.

You wrote today: For me, my independence can be a habit. I grew up in an alcoholic home. I didn't feel cared for, so I learned to rely on myself. As such, I am utterly and completely reliable, and relatively self-sufficient. Ask anyone. I have a hard time asking for help or relying on others. Even God.

If there is anyway I can do it myself, I try. But I'm learning more every day to rely on the one who made me....

Ouch, ouch and one more ooh...that hurts. I'm a new widow and I am navigating my grief and being available to my grown children. I'm facing brand new giants as I work to do what I can and process what God wants me to do, and call on my children...but give them space to grieve...but not push them's a daily prayer.

I'm glad God's grace doesn't grade me on performance. I think some days I'd have an "F."

Thank you, today, for your words. I am able to better forgive myself for my bullheaded stoic "wonder woman" charateristics that are emerging again in this new "heat" and pain.

God bless you.

Pinkshoelady said...

Hi Kelly,

I loved this! You write so down home and real! I feel as if I have known you for years.

I once heard a quote that goes with this post.

"You will never think yourself into a new way of acting. You must act yourself into a new way of thinking."

Love ya,
Pamela R.

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

Habits are difficult, and it's difficult to see that we actually get bound up in them. I'm in a hotel room today, trying really hard not to eat (I'm not actually hungry) but I want to because ... I can? Anyway, I didn't post your comment at my site just because I was afraid it might draw Google responses lookin for the wrong thang! But you cracked me up.

"B" His Girl said...

Hi Kelly,

I read your dilema about Tuesdays and the linking thing. It brought up a lesson God is teaching me. I keep doing the one, two, thr..oops too. Here's the lesson:
God told me to do something 2 years ago. The task was to send a copy of my first public message as a speaker to someone in ministry I know a little and respect tons. I was a little embarrassed to do that. Why would he be interested in my words? I had one part in my message where I got a little off track. I recovered okay but I didn't really want to send a 'less than perfect in performance message'to somebody like him. I wanted him to think I was good.:) You could feel the Presence of the Holy Spirit in the message so I knew that topped my mess up. I assumed God wanted me to send the video for him to evaluate me, give me some I sent it and asked for an evalution. He did not respond to me. OUCH! I felt so stupid! The enemy had a field day in my mind with that! Another year passed by without understanding why God had me do that. I knew I heard Him tell me to send the video. One day out of the blue, I read a devotion and God connect that devotion to what had happened with the DVD I sent. You might say God pulled back the curtain and let me see some things. Here is what the Lord showed me.
He never told me why I was to send the video. I added that reason. My part was to do what He told me. So many times, I obey and look for the results of my obedience or a reason for Him to want me to do something. I lean on my own understanding! God let me know the results are up to Him!!!!! God has now let me know He is going to do something more with a story in that message. Maybe this person was supposed to be familiar with that story for what God has planned in the future? (Leave it alone Barbara) Regardless, God just wants me to be obedient. Is it enough for me to be pleasing to God? Why do I need others evaluations? He called me. Why do I have to try to figure things out? He gave me the message I gave on that dvd. I was clear on that. I went to She Speaks for the first time in June. It was a blessing. God told me to go. I had already been to a conference for speakers and writers so I had no plans to attend. Again I did the one, two, thr...oops. Since I was clueless why I was going, I wrote my leader at She Speaks and asked for a real evaluation. "Don't sugar coat it," I basically said..I wanted to make the trip worth all the money God was having me spend!!!! (Questioning His direction perhaps?) Once again, I feel stupid as I am writing this. This time it is a good thing. God is connecting my pattern I have been practicing. I wanted to see results from my obedience. Here is the kicker though from She Speaks.....God told me not to read my evaluations on my trip home from NC! They are still in a folder unread....He did not have me send a dvd or attend the conference for what I call 'concrete results'. This may not make any sense but as I am typing this, I am seeing the patterns of my one, two, three's. Sharing my lesson with you has taught me a new lesson!!! OUCH again, but in a good way! Wow, God! I want to break this cycle. Help ME practice what I preach. Thanks Kelly for being the springboard for something God is working in me. I hope this confirms how God is using your post about Him. He just gave you the Gold for a 'perfect post'!!! May He bless you beyond numbers!!! It is His link to you and your link to Him that will have the biggest impact on the WWW. Thanks again. I may have to post this!
His slow B girl,