I love to talk.
For as long as I can remember, talking has been my favorite pastime. My teachers used to comment that I talked too much in class. Later on in middle school and high school, I became that chatty girlfriend of the group. Then in college, the thing my husband said he most loved about me was the way I could talk. I could work a room, making the shy ones feel included. I could talk to everyone from the college president to the bag boy at the local grocery store.
Although my husband loved my verbal skills when we were dating, it didn’t take him long on our honeymoon to have this thought: “When is she ever gonna stop talking?” In fact, he has decided, should I go before him, what he will put on my tombstone.
Yep, I’ll finally be done talking.
As someone who talks so much, you might think talking to God comes naturally to me, but it doesn’t. Because I am so used to processing life out loud with my friends, when I hit a bump in my mothering, or a rough patch in my marriage, I tend to pick up the phone to dial a friend rather than hit my knees to pray to God. And while friendship is important, and we all need sisters we can lean on in times of trouble, they should not take the place of God.
Let’s determine that we won’t make God our last resort when it comes to dealing with situations in our life. Here are a few habits we might try to acquire to help us become women who hit our knees before we hit the phone.
Initiate the 10-minute rule.
When an issue arises in your life and you feel you want to chat with a friend about it to get their feedback, do not let yourself do so for at least 10 minutes. Use that 10 minutes to get alone and pray. If you can’t get physically alone because there are little people all around you, try to get alone in your thoughts. Sometimes just pausing before we pick up the phone to process the situation with a friend can be the turning point for us in making in a matter of prayer rather than a matter of panic.
Set an alarm on your phone.
Once you have prayed about the situation initially, set an alarm on your phone for at least one more time during the day. Label the alarm with the phrase that will remind you of the situation, prompting you to stop what you are doing for a few minutes to chat with God about the issue at hand.
Keep a journal.
Sometimes jotting down your prayer requests in an old-fashioned journal can help you to sort through your feelings and center your thoughts on God. Journaling is a great way to keep track of prayer requests and then later record their answers. Pick up one today. You can even get some cute ones at dollar stores.
Have a friend hold you accountable.
Enlist the help of a trusted friend who also longs to run to God instead of running to other people first. When each of you brings up a matter to the other, you can gently ask, “Have you prayed about this yet?” If the answer is, “No”, stop right then and pray together. Seeking God in prayer along with a friend is a great tool and is much different than just venting or fretting on the phone.
Let’s make it our aim to go to God first before we turn to our friends. Our faith will grow and—as a result—our friendships will too!
This post is a part of The Better Mom Book Club. Its not too late to join us as we read Karen Ehman's new book, Keep it Shut. Join us here every Thursday, and sign up via email and facebook to join even more conversations and get great content right in your inbox!
Click on the image above or here to learn all about the book club!