Girlfriends in God - July 13, 2007

July 13, 2007

Escape from the To-Dos

Angela L. Craig


We hope you are enjoying the Girlfriends in God daily devotions.  We (Mary, Sharon, and Gwen) would like to introduce you to some of our special friends.  From time-to-time, the Friday devotions will be written by one of our friends in ministry.  We call them our "Friday Friends."  So grab your Bible and a fresh cup of coffee and drink in the words from our "Friday Friend", Angela Craig.



Today’s Truth

Philippians 3:10 (Amplified Bible) says, “My determined purpose is that I may know Him, that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His person.”


Friend to Friend

In the month of July, the theme of “freedom” prevails. We see it in red, white, and blue flags and banners. We hear about the value of freedom from our radios and see it celebrated in parades and fireworks.


July beckons me to ask the question, “What do I want to be free from?” In the past, I wanted freedom from bondage such as pride, fear, and negative emotions. This year the answer to that question was clearer than ever before; this year, I want to escape my to-do list!


Once I knew what it was I wanted to be free from, I asked the question, “How can I break free?” My first approach to achieving this goal was to become a “to-do list terminator”. I made myself a list of ways I could terminate some of the things on my over loaded schedule. My list looked something like this:


1) Accidentally drop cell phone in the lake.

2) Turn off computer.

3) Tell children they will not be attending any more birthday parties or summer camps.

4) Sell the vacuum cleaner on

5) Tell husband we are eating frozen dinners until we are 92.


After reviewing my list, I decided that these ideas all seem a little drastic. Plus, I had done nothing more than create a new to-do list!


Realizing that doing anything on my own is normally a flop, I tried my second approach (which should have been my first): ask God what He wants my to-do list to look like. The first part of God’s answer to my question is found in Philippians 3:10 (Amplified Bible) which says, “My determined purpose is that I may know Him, that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His person.” Through His Word, God teaches us that our greatest to-do is to know Him.


With this answer, I enthusiastically decided to take action, knowing that when I spent more time with God He would guide and direct my steps and I would escape my over-filled to-do list! But before I could get started, God put the brakes on my zealous attitude with this question, “Why do you think your to-do list is so long?”


With great contemplation, scripture reading, and prayer I realized that my to-do list is overwhelmingly full because being busy helps me to feel valued and gives me a sense of security. My to-do list gives me a purpose to get out of bed in the morning. This is not in itself a negative thing. We should feel purposeful in our daily tasks, whether they are big or small. The problem lies in the fact that many of us have extraordinary to-do lists because we have no idea that we have value outside of what we accomplish each day. We have forgotten it is not the list of to-do’s we accomplish or don’t accomplish each day that should determine our value, but the fact that we are daughters of the King who loves us the same whether we are sitting or running. Matthew 6:26 (NIV) assures us of this fact when it says, “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” Friends, be assured that our to-do lists will not overwhelm us when we allow God to write them. He promises to write them with loving purpose and abundance that will help us to see our true value through His eyes.


Let’s Pray

Dear Heavenly Father,

I Thank you Lord that my value is not based on my daily accomplishments but because I am your child, uniquely created to know you. I am so grateful that when I spend time with You, You promise to guide every step of my day bringing comfort and wisdom in times of need. Lord, open my eyes to anything that is on my list that is not orchestrated by You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


Now it is Your Turn

1) Test your to-do list motives. When you are done answering the following questions, use your answers to help you access and write down what you get out of an overwhelming to-do list.


  • Do you ever sit down? When you do, are you feeling more guilt than rest while you think of all the things you should be doing instead?
  • Does a packed schedule help you to avoid negative emotions and depression?
  • Does a long to-do list give you a sense of security and control?
  • Do you pack your schedule full to avoid being alone?
  • Do you feel selfish when you take time for yourself?



2) Take a 3 minute “God Break” each day for the next 5 days; just you, God, and your Bible. Focus your attention on getting to know Him. The more you know about God, the more you will trust Him to write your daily schedule.


3) Choose a 48 hour window this week where you choose not to add anything new to your schedule.



Girlfriends in God

P.O. Box 725

Matthews, NC 28106






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Originally published Friday, 13 July 2007.