Someone posed an interesting question on Quora recently: what do you tell yourself everyday? That repeated phrase could be good, bad, or just plain weird, but it likely has a profound effect on your behavior.
Let’s take a look at some examples. Valeria Cooper said:
This won’t last forever.
Oliver Emberton said:
What’s the most important thing I can do now
Finally, Shreyas Panduranga says what I should probably say to myself more often:
This doesn’t really matter, move on.
I agree that this is a profound line of thinking.
When I was a kid, I was told that the Bible says, “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” Turns out, that’s not anywhere in the Bible, but it’s true nonetheless. Garbage in; garbage out.
For the past few weeks, Lady has been telling the Advent story (a la Godly Play) on Sunday nights as we light each of our Advent candles. The first week, we told the story of the prophets (“people who were close to God, and God was close to them, that they knew what was most important”), then the Holy Family (“I bet they were the last people on the road to Bethlehem that night”), and last week the Shepherds (“and the angels told them, ‘Don’t be Afraid.'”) This week, we’ll introduce the Magi, the people who “followed a Wild Star” (yes, liturgical sticklers… we know).
We have been telling our kids this story because we think that it is important for how they interpret the Birth of Christ. We tell them, week after week, and day after day, that the Mystery of Christmas is important, and we need to take time to get ready for the “King that already came, and who is still coming.” We want it bored into their hearts and minds that Christmas was about God loving us, not Santa brining us entitlements or fearing the tattle-taling Elf on the Shelf.
What do you tell yourself everyday? What shapes the way you see the world?
Is it, “I don’t deserve this”? Is it, “No one could love someone like me”?
Is it, “I keep getting screwed” or “It’s hard.”?
I think there is a reason that the “A” of the theological alphabet is Grace. Grace is the first thing we should tell ourselves. We are God’s and there is nothing we can do about it. There is no “God’s way or the highway,” it’s just God’s easy way or God’s hard way. All ways are God’s ways. Which will we choose?
It’s is important to consider what we tell ourselves. It’s even more important remember what God’ tells us.
You are loved.