The Yellow Pad: A Wisdom Prayer
God gave me a gift today. Awhile ago I gave up trying to make my life work with all my lists, calendars, and yellow sticky notes and just said, “God, I need help! I have clients who are expecting custom reports, EPA global warming scenarios to run, church members who need me—the Relief Society president—to come and help with emergencies, two sons who need rides for school and doctor appointments, and a husband who wants my full attention. No matter what I do, there’s a longer list that doesn’t get done.”
The list on the yellow pad gets longer and longer and I sleep less and less. I tell my kids, my clients, and my Relief
Society counselors that if it’s not on the yellow pad, then it’s not getting done, so make sure you see me write it there. Even then, it might not get done.
Now it’s in God’s hands. Each day I get up, take my legal sized, yellow pad with five pages of unfinished to-do’s (one on each line) and make my list of priorities for the day on another sheet. Then I take that sheet and pray and ask God what He wants me to do. Most of the time, I cross off half of my list and then add two or three people He wants me to call.
Lately I haven’t even looked at the yellow pad except to add things and then ask God each day what my tasks are. I’m afraid to look at the pad. I don’t want to know what I’m forgetting. Today as I listed my to-do’s for the day—finish the income taxes, take Ryan to the doctor, have the missionaries to dinner, make the dinner first—I could feel the Spirit whispering, Look at the yellow pad. Look at the yellow pad. I said I don’t want to look at the yellow pad. It discourages me to see the yellow pad. Finally, at 10:00 a.m., when the Spirit still hadn’t given up, I said, Fine. You win. I’ll look at the yellow pad. There must be an important task I’m overlooking.
I looked through all five pages, searching for that important task, crossing off the things I’d already done as I searched and, guess what? There’s nothing left to be done on the yellow pad.
How did God do that?
From the book In His Footsteps: I Gave My ToDo List To God and Got More Done, More Sleep and Less Stress
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