Falling Off the Train & Getting Back On

train in railway

Here I am, staring at my computer screen at almost 12:30PM my time realizing that I have managed to miss 3 week days in a row of posting the “Morning Discipline”.

Falling Off the Train

Its kind of ironic (I think? The definition of that word often eludes me) that I have managed to fall off the train with regards to developing my own morning discipline when I have been posting these things to help…well…develop my morning discipline.

I’m clearly not as disciplined as I had hoped for at this stage of the game.

Now, each of these mornings that I missed I was engaged in something else and told myself “I’ll do it when I get done” and then at some point I managed to completely forget until it was no longer morning time. Kinda missing the window of doing a “Morning Discipline”.

But, can I be transparent for a moment?

Some of my “absent mindedness” in making these posts is because I noticed a serious drop off of readers over the last couple weeks from when I started and I began to tell myself that this may not be worth my time. I even put out a poll last week (Thursday) to try and gauge interest and value in what I’m doing and got 2 responses over the course of 4 days. Not a super great response for building up my confidence that this is having any real positive impact for others like I had hoped.

And…in a strange way…I somehow proved the importance of fostering daily positive thoughts, affirmations, prayer, and scripture to continue to retrain and renew my mind.

You see, I got into my own head and started looking at “the numbers” (pastor friends, can you relate? lol) and mentally I decided that I must not be having any meaningful impact like I had hoped after doing almost a month of these posts. I allowed myself to get negative, to focus on “the numbers”, and to allow those things to derail me from something I had initially started to help myself anyway.

Getting Back On the Train

So what do I do at this point?

I think I have to start with doing exactly what I am doing with this post – being honest with myself and with others.

Next, I think I need to learn to have a little more grace for myself. Not to the point that I excuse my lack of or failure in discipline, but to humbly recognize that I’m still growing and learning and that there will absolutely be times of falling off.

The important thing, though, will be to not remain off the train.

After that I think the next best step is to write a post like this that comes in the middle of the day or evening (whenever I get the chance), reflects on my missed opportunity, remains open and honest with my readers, and then prioritizes things for the next day so that I don’t remain “off the train”.

Finally, I just need to forgive myself and then hop back on and continue on down the tracks.

Developing discipline, I’m realizing, isn’t a “one and done” kind of thing. (Duh, right?)

It takes time, it takes many attempts (with many failures) until I get to a place where the discipline becomes part of my life and daily routine. And even then, I’m going to mess up from time to time. But the more I develop my discipline, the easier it will be to get back on the train after I fall off. And the more willing I am to forgive myself, the easier it will be as well.

You know? I should’ve known this, and not been remotely surprised by this (but for some reason I was) because this is something I go through with the health journey I’ve been on over the last several years, and the marital journey I’ve been on for almost 20 years, or the parental journey I’ve been on for almost 16 years, or the church journey I’ve been on for 41 years.

Life is a journey with many detours.

Some detours are self inflicted, some are not.

Learn from the detours, get back on the tracks, and keep on rolling.

So…my friends…I’ll see you tomorrow morning!

1 Comment

  1. This was awesome. See, I too, was feeling guilty because I had made a commitment to follow this daily and I have not. While I can give you a reason, it’s not important. Now I am doing catch up. Thank you for not giving up. While I truly enjoy your devotions, I cannot help but wonder how much pleasure they bring God.

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