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A New Kind of To-Do List


Does your to-do list ever feel like a massive reminder of how you've failed? It feels impossible to get it all done. Small children have a way of laughing in the face of a to-do list. There are so many distractions, social media, then throw in working from home, and e-learning/homeschooling…. and you might wonder if to-do lists are a relic of pre-pandemic times along with those 2020 planners.

When I get discouraged about my lack of checked boxes, I try to take a different approach. Instead of looking at what I need to do, I like to write down what I did do throughout my day. So when I wonder why nothing got checked off, I can see what people and situations needed my attention instead. Or see where I did not steward my time well!

This reminds me of what Scripture tells us to do over and over: remember what God has done. Look back and see. He has always been faithful.

I remember the days of old; I meditate on all that you have done; I ponder the work of your hands. Psalm 143:5

When I take that truth and apply it to my life, it changes the way I see my to-do list. The to-do list represents my striving, me trying to do enough. What if I took the opposite approach? And wrote down what God has done each day?

Look What God Has Done!

Before making a to-do list, make a God-Has-Done list! At the end of your day, ask yourself a few of these questions:

How has the Lord been faithful to me today?
How have I been faithful to Him?
In what areas has He extended grace and mercy to me?
How has He worked through me to bless others?
What or who has God used to encourage me today?

Joe and Tara Buchanan

Joe and Tara Buchanan have been married for 23 years and have four children, ages 10-20. They share more marriage and family encouragement on their blog, Behind Our Smiles.

The God-Has-Done list gives me hope and strength for a new day. It helps me to remember what God is doing in my life even when my list isn’t getting done.

God is interested in our hearts, not our accomplishments. When we focus on what He is doing and submit our day to Him, our priorities follow. And a few unchecked boxes at the end of the day might be exactly where God wants us if it means we were following Him first.

Praise the Lord, He has done great things - write them down!

Only fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you. 1 Samuel 12:24