When life gets difficult, maintaining discipline makes life doable.

Effective living means putting first things first. Effective self-management requires discipline to carry out those priorities. These days of “shelter-in-place” are precious days that will require daily personal rhythms to make them meaningful.

Yesterday on the neighborhood app “Next Door,” this conversation was posted.

“I was just driving down my street and saw a friend driving from the other direction. We slowed down, stopped, rolled down our windows, and spoke for a moment (all while maintaining a social distance).

He looked at me and said, “I finished Netflix.”

I asked him, “Which one?”

He said, “All of it.”

I like movies as much as anyone, but when this COVID-19 pandemic ebbs away eventually, I want to look back not at a gigantic “Watch it Again” list on Netflix, but rather a fruit-filled season of serving the Lord daily with good discipleship practices. Here is my personal list of Seven Daily Disciplines. What are yours?

1. What have I heard in the Word today and what am I going to do about it?

“Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path.” Psalm 119:105

2. What can I be grateful about today? Who can I tell?

“Be thankful.” Col. 3:15b

3. Who can I reach out to today? Be kind.

“I give you a new command: Love one another.” John 13:34

4. What expectations of normalcy can I give up today? Be flexible.

“Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Look, I am about to do something new…” Isaiah 43:18-19

(Thank you, Brooke Anderson, for this question and the idea for a daily list. greatergood.berkeley.edu)

5. How can I get out and get some exercise today? Stay fit.

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit… Therefore honor God with your bodies.” 1 Cor. 6:19-20

6. Have I stayed on beat with my daily life rhythms? Stay on beat. Rest, work, eat and drink, serve, pray, etc.

“There is an occasion for everything and a time for every activity under heaven.” Eccl. 3:1

7. What gospel opportunity has opened up for me today? How did I do?

“Come, follow me [Jesus] and I will make you fishers of men.” Matt. 4:19

All Bible passages are from the Holman Christian Standard Bible.

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