Last week I had a very productive day at work (not that I don't have productive days every day...lol). This particular day, I was working alone (for the most part). So, I live-streamed some music on my computer while I worked for the sake of company. At one point, the music stopped and the talk segments began (for about 4 hours). A few of the segments were intriguing and moving, but when they switched to analyzing politics I finally turned it off. All was not lost, though. I did listen to a great 15 minute segment from Dr. Joyce Meyer. There are times when just a simple sentence or word can inspire me. Dr. Meyer talked about 'giving up counting'.
Counting is a mathematical way to solve mysteries and situations. If I have a dozen apples and Joey takes two to school for lunch and dad grabs three for work, how many will be left for Suzie and her friends for an afternoon snack? With just a few precise calculations, you can have your exact answer.
However, counting does not always help or solve some real-life situations. In fact, counting can sometimes lead to stress and more questions.
If you're planning a fundraising event that needs to be well-attended in order to succeed, predicting the number of people that will or will not show up is crucial. Starting to count the attendees as they enter the room can be nerve wracking.
If your faith journey has you committing to prayer every day, how long is long enough? What if on Tuesday you only have time to pray for 15 minutes - is that enough? Will God understand that your time was limited that day because your plate was full?
If you're working on making lifestyle changes and trying to commit to an exercise regimen, do you have days when you ask yourself 'Did I walk far enough?' 'Did I stay on the bike long enough?' 'Have I lost enough weight?'
There are days when I ask myself, 'What is God's plan for me?' I may think I know where my life is heading, but MY plan and God's plan could easily be different. MY plan and YOUR plan may be as different as our needs. We all need different things and have different ways of going after them. That's more than okay because everyone is different and unique. Ultimately, YOUR plan won't work for me and MY plan won't for you, especially if God's plan is different than both of ours.
What's the answer? Only God has that answer, but my suggestion would be to give up the counting. Let nature take its course. Quit counting the number of pounds you've lost or the number of miles you've run. Let your faith journey endure the twists and turns that present themselves; what we learn along the way may be the lesson that was waiting to be learned. Maybe it's not all about the number of minutes we pray, but rather what we say to God when we're praying. There's something to be said for quality over quantity.
Counting works great in math equations and scientific formulas, but real-life situations ... maybe not so much.