I repeat life is not a checklist, but we often would like it to be. Sermons are given in 3 or 4 points that we can check off. Magazines give us checklists of do's and don'ts. I have even given my children checklists to help them remember their daily task but even then they sometimes have trouble following the checklist. I always have a grocery check list but it only helps if I check off the items. My husband still wonders how I make it home from the store without everything on my list.
I actually like checklists and use them. There are even times I wish God would give me a checklist of what I need to do for him today. Something like. 1. Don't forget to kiss your husband good bye in the morning. 2. Make sure your morning words to your children are kind not harried. 3. Patiently answer that student's question even if it has been asked twice already. 4. Kindly encourage those students who don't want to do anything. 5. Don't forget to connect with your coworkers and find out how they are doing. etc... Instead He gave me the incredible gift of His Holy Spirit who changes our perspective completely. Fruit such as love, joy , peace and even self control suddenly becomes a part of our daily lives. First it is just a little bit and then hopefully more and more. The goal is a relationship that results in being instead of a checklist that it is all about doing. I have just finished a Bible study by Beth Moore on Living Beyond Yourself about the fruit of the Spirit. I realized how the fruit is often lacking in my life, and since I know the checklist approach fails at least in this area. I think I am going to go for the Spirit Filled Option.
Father God, I realize that I am crucified with Christ and yet I live and the life I now lead I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me. Fill me with your Spirit and may your fruit abound in my life. Amen