Thursday, October 7, 2010


Okay, so I am known in my family as the “list-maker.” But what happens when the list of “Things To Be Done” has to be revised, and revised, and revised again?

Over the years I’ve made lists in case I forget to do something and let others – or myself – down. On particularly busy times there may be a list for that month, that week, sometimes even for that “tomorrow.” And there was that long, long list I had to make for us to make sure everything was organised for our trip overseas last year to the ACFW conference.

I always try to put the most urgent things on the top. For example:-
Electricty bill (that should be paid before tomorrow)
Hair appointment tomorrow afternoon. (Can’t put up with the mess it’s in a day longer!)
Prepare for the prayer meeting in the evening. (The house is a real mess!)
Email (Try to do the most urgent: editor, agent, speaking engagement requests, friends’ visit.)
Write new blog post due tomorrow.
And I know what you are thinking right now: “Why doesn’t she simply stop wasting time writing lists and do?”
Any list-makers reading this? Can you please give some of the many reasons just why you make lists?

Oh. . .yeah, well. . .what excuse did I have all those years ago? Mmm. . .no real secret, there were so many other things I enjoyed doing, like reading, writing, reading, favourite TV show, reading, reading.

So, how does that list of mine cope when "Life" happens?
Do these photos of my poor desk – and lists – give you a clue?

Yes, “Life” did happen in the Hawkins family these last few weeks and many lists had to be scrapped. On my own blog this last week I shared the major one. When your son’s beautiful mother-in-law suddenly becomes ill and goes to be with the Lord very quickly, the lists simply get tossed out and precious grandchildren who have lost their precious “Nan” need top priority while their Mum and Dad have to be away.

The most wonderful thing I have been reminded of so many, many times over the years when my lists have been disrupted is that God knows, God is in control, HE is the One who orders our days and has the last say about our schedules. And that has been the case once again. Sure it has been hectic. Sure we are feeling rather weary. Sure we will be glad to get back to normal – whatever “normal” is in our household!
But as we look back there is no mistaking the fact that God made His own list for us. Things could have been so much more difficult!

The funeral was on a Saturday in another state and it “happened” to be the first Sunday for many weeks my husband was not booked to preach at a church anywhere. He even had a guest missionary speaker at our own church fellowship. It is the first time in months he has not had to even speak at least once on a Sunday! There have been other things “happen” as well that simply have given comfort that God loves us, knows our weaknesses, knows our strengths, how much we can cope with as He enables us.

Sure, my writing and speaking projects have suffered. Sure there will be extra long hours working to catch up on all that has to be done. Above all else, I am so blessed to know I can relax because I am so very certain HE is the one in control of ALL my lists – as I seek His will, His face, in prayerful fellowship each day.

Once again I am proving the wonderful truth of Proverbs 3:5-6
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.”

May you trust each day so that when those difficult days do arrive, you will have peace that the faithful God of love and mercy is the One still in control!


  1. I make lists too, Mary. When there's too much to do, spending a few minutes writing it all down and setting some priorities really helps me focus. Yes, life happens and the things at the bottom of the list fall away, but I still like lists.

  2. My husband smiles at many of my lists. I also can get frustrated when I simply don't get the things done - and then God pulls me up with a jerk! I do try to find out HIS priorities when doing those lists so I simply have to either work harder or know some things just were not to be.

  3. I'm sorry to hear about the loss of your mother-in-law, Mary.

    I make lists because the physical act of writing them helps me to remember things even if I never refer to them again. A prime example is my shopping list which I often leave at home, but still remember what to buy.

  4. Mary, thanks so much for the reminder that God is in control. He gave me these Proverbs verses to ponder this week, so there must be something this list maker has to learn, too.