“We are all living in accordance to a specific regimen of habits, and those habits shape most of our life.”
This quote from Justin Earley’s book The Common Rule acknowledges that habits are the automatic and unconscious behaviors that we all live by. Some of those habits may be good and some of them are not so good. But make no mistake about it, we all have habits we live by.
I like the way Annie Dillard put it. She said, “How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one, is what we are doing. A schedule defends from chaos and whim. It is a net for catching days. It is a scaffolding on which a worker can stand and labor with both hands at sections of time.”
And so, our habits are how we stand up and get our hands on time. It is how we are able to get our hands on our purpose.
Consider what Justin Earley says in his book The Common Rule.
“All those who want to be attentive to who they are becoming must realize that formation begins with a framework of habits.
It’s utterly important to learn the right theological truths about God and neighbor, but it is equally necessary to put that theology into practice via a rule of life. You can’t believe truth without practicing truth, and vice versa. You can’t know who Jesus is without following Jesus, and vice versa. To live with only one or the other of these things is to live as a half-human being.
Only when your habits are constructed to match your worldview do you become someone who doesn’t just know about God and neighbor but someone who actually loves God and neighbor.”
During our 50 Days of Spiritual Growth – From Easter to Pentecost we are going to be working through the book The Common Rule.
It is “common” in that it is geared to the “common man.”
And by “rule” we don’t mean that it is following a list of rules. Instead, the word rule refers to what is “regular.” What are the regular rhythms of your life that help you to love God and love others?
This Sunday, I will be sharing more about the book and the common habits it invites us to embrace.
I would like to invite you to consider the following:
- Buy the book and read it with us during this 8-week journey - The Common Rule.
- Process through the book in community – with someone else.
- Give it a try! Habits form our hearts. And so quite literally, they reveal what we worship. So, if we put it that way, this is no small thing! This gets to the very core of living.