For Consideration: The Shaping Power of Rhythms
Have you noticed how everyone has been talking about habits (atomic habits, anyone?), schedules, New Year’s resolutions, time management, work/life balance a lot in recent years. As a Christian, have you, too, considered the power of rhythms and customs in your life–and the effect of your rhythms on your community and family?
Last Sunday, Pastor Andrew led us through a study of Luke 2:41-52, in which we were challenged to consider the role of gospel-centered rhythms, curiosity, and obedience as people who want to grow in grace. After all, while its natural to do so, we cannot underestimate the shaping power of our rhythms, our customs, and our way of life. For they will determine who we see ourselves becoming, and inevitably, they shape us–for better or for worse.
Check out this short clip from Sunday’s sermon to consider the shaping power of your daily, weekly, monthly and even annual rhythms both in your own life and those around you. Then, hop on down for some questions to consider as you process ways to add intentional gospel-oriented rhythms into your life so that you might grow in grace.
Questions to consider
Is there a rhythm in your walk with Jesus? Daily? Weekly? Monthly? Annually?
What causes you to be knocked out of priortizing a gospel-oriented rhythm in your life and for your family or community? Does it help to know that it is normal for everyone to be knocked out of rhythms–even important and helpful ones? Do you let that default experience discourage you from continuing on making the most of everyday moving forward? How can you reset?
Do you tend to fit in gospel-oriented rhythms around your other priorities, hobbies and relationships or do you practically prioritize your relationship with God and His stated priorities when determining your schedule for the day, week, and month? Ask the Lord what difference that makes in who you see yourself and who you are becoming?
Take time to consider how your rhythms shape those who are watching you–kids, friends, your church community, etc. Is your rhythm (and the prioritizes it naturally demonstrates) encourage others to put their worth, their hope, their joy, their time, their passion in God and who He says they are? Or does it inadverantly lead them elsewhere?
Are you willing to let your relationship with God take precedence over all other relationships–even good ones–and have your rhythms reflect this? Do you ever fear that doing so will be misinterpreted or misunderstood by others? Have you allowed any relationship to knock you out of rhythm with God? If so, are you willing to humbly acknowledge this, repent and to readjust for God?
A challenge moving forward
Make a plan. Make a plan to consider these questions with God this week–if not right now. That’s right, make a plan.
That plan can be as loose as “on my commute to work or my daily dog walk, I will commit to turn off other podcasts and music and simply pray through these questions and listen.”
It can be as formal as saying, “After my Monday morning meetings, I am going to turn my notifications off, put away my electronics, make coffee and sit down in a particular place at a particular time to attempt to have an open time with God that I will not fill with anything else until my 1 o’clock Zoom meeting (but I’m willing to keep on going or meet back later ;)).”
Next Saturday, our new blog entry will include ideas for how to incorproate more gospel-oriented rhythms and customs to your days, weeks, months and years–especially if you find it particularly hard to do so for various life season/career/daily-demand reasons.
Could you also email Kim Arthur this week if: a) you have a helpful suggestion/practice for how to cultivate gospel-oriented rhythms in a specific life situations (i.e. parenting young children, demanding work schedule, mainly unbelieving community that affect scheduled hang outs, etc.) no matter how simple, novel or basic it might be–you never know how that tried and true idea might help another or b) if you have specific questions or obstacles that you have found to be hard to navigate to cultivate daily, weekly and monthly gospel-oriented rhythms so we can try to address those as well.
Written by Kim Arthur, The Hallows Church Communications Director. Content adapted from Pastor Andrew Arthur’s January 9, 2022 sermon entitled “Growing in Grace: The Role of Rhythms, Curiosity, and Obedience.”