I have been thinking a great deal about the meaning of this word and how I live it out in my life. A couple of things my current course in Psychology has taught me is 1) Behavior is purposeful and connected to my thoughts and 2) I often believe my own faulty story. Being an all-or-nothing thinker, consistency is defined as perfection. Whatever I try to accomplish must be perfect and for me, almost instantaneous. This makes it difficult to observe or celebrate any forward movement as positive progress. First, because it is not finished….perfected and it takes too long. OK, It does not surprise me if about now you are thinking I’m slightly warped. Or you could be nodding your head in agreement because this sounds very familiar. There are a great deal of people who struggle with this idea of progress versus perfection thought process.
My heart’s desire is to be consistent because I believe it to be the engine that drives behavioral change. Even small movements practiced consistently over time will produce change. I have a coach with Precision Nutrition that has been gently living that process out with me since April, 2014. My measuring system is flawed and I recognize that now.
I was reading in Matthew 4:18-25 today and imagining what kind of thought processes Andrew, Peter, James and John were engaged in when they meet Jesus by the sea of Galilee. He extends a simple, but we now know, profound invitation to these sets of brothers. “Come follow me and I will . . .”. When I imagine myself in this situation as one of these men, fishing, doing life as usual, and then this mysterious newcomer extends an intriguing invitation, I would be thinking, ‘sure I’ll leave my fishing for a day. No big deal.’ But days turn into weeks, months and years. The word used in all the gospel accounts of this event was ‘immediately’ they left what they were doing a followed Jesus. They observe him, listen to him, perhaps attend to him and this simple invitation and their consistent, in-the -moment attention changed the world.
An AH HA moment for me. Yes I realize I’m a slow learner….Consistently was measured in small movements, small steps of obedience and over time it was their life pattern; one for which they were willing to die. They had prophetic words that informed them ow what was to come, but initially they followed the man, Jesus, trusting he was who he claimed to be. First intrigued, then they believed his words and were transformed one small step of belief at a time, over time.
Consistency is accomplished daily, measured with teaspoons not gallons and each day provides new opportunities to be proactive, to choose, even to fail and then regroup and re-engage. Consistency is bathed in grace and only fully understood in a backwards look marking the place of beginning and movement toward the defined goal. For the brothers it was learning to fish for men by first getting out of their boats, leaving the known for the unknown, being willing to trust the one who invited them.
The invitation is the same today, “Come follow me and I will…..”
Will your response be immediate?
To what is Jesus inviting you?
How will you measure consistency?
Be Blessed . . .