I don’t want to write today. I would rather be sleeping or catching up with Twitter or watching basketball. But this blog is important to me and if I am able to help some people who might happen upon it then I have really accomplished something. So, I know I have to keep the discipline of regular writing even though I don’t want to.
There is immense value in doing something even though I don’t want to. Isn’t our “want to” response the enemy of many things that are important? If we only listened to what we wanted to do we would do absolutely nothing. Any truly great athlete or performer will often be able to answer their “I don’t want to” response with a pointed “shut up.”
Orel Hershiser, a Christian and great pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers, said in his book that on the days that he needed to workout and his “I don’t want to” response was especially loud he would find someone nearby and tell them that he had little motivation that day and he needed them to workout with him to keep him honest and working hard.
Hershiser knew that accountability and community were essential for him to maintain discipline and commitment. It is too bad that American churches push the “lone ranger Christian” mentality so hard and make following Christ out to be such an individualistic endeavor. Left to ourselves, we listen to our negative responses way too often. We justify our lack of commitment to Bible reading or prayer. We give in to the myth that what matters is the 10 minutes we spend in quiet time even though the rest of our lives could be filled with devotion and spiritual activities as well.
We all could use a little more practice and help telling our “I don’t want to” response to shove it. Get started today. There is much that we are missing behind these negative responses.