I enjoy using modern software applications for keeping notes, ideas, journaling and organising day to day life. I’ve built a system of tools and processes inspired by others. Although I love simplicity, there is inevitably a complexity to effective systems. Recently my system failed me. Although software can have bugs, I think this failure originated with me. Instead of setting up a recurring date, the system entered an end date and I did not notice. I was probably rushing and didn’t take the few seconds to check for accuracy. An important personal task was missed.
Systems are good and often necessary. Our bodies are filled with systems that work together harmoniously to keep us alive. God is very good at building systems that don’t fail. Our human systems can have flaws because we are not perfect but sometimes failures result from the system users. Why was I rushing? Probably too much going on and feeling like there’s too much to do. No matter how hard we might try, we’ll still make mistakes and that’s okay. We can reduce them by slowing down. If we Stop For A Moment to check and reflect, many issues could be avoided or detected early.
My response to this failure may have been harsh. I decided to cut the use of one application entirely to simplify my system. It took some time but I feel better about it. I identified the strengths in the tools I’m using and how I work to find a simpler way. In order to do this, I had to remove the clutter and get a clear overview of everything so I could make the best decisions.
Recently, I needed to trim back some shrubs, they were overgrown, unruly and needed a haircut. Unfortunately, in my zeal, I did not see the wasp nest hidden in the thick foliage. Ouch! One of them got me. Other than a puffy wrist here’s what I learned from that experience.
We need to regularly cut back the overgrowth in our lives physically, mentally and spiritually. Identify the things, tasks, unprocessed emotions, unhealthy attachments, distractions and lies that overwhelm us. Sometimes, this process might sting! We may have hurt or regret to deal with, some hidden sin or offence. A thinned out tree is more exposed and allows more light in from the sun. It’s hard for things like wasp nests to hide in the open. The nasty hidden things not dealt with will always hurt us. They can also sting others around us through our words and actions.
When we thin our lives out, we make more room for God’s light to penetrate our lives through His Son Jesus. It’ll be much harder to deceive ourselves and hide or bury things we should not. The Lord’s light will reveal the wasp nests we’re harbouring. He’ll help us to safely remove them and heal us from any sting.
Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. John 15:2 NKJV