As a teenager, I loved math! Problem solving for the type A personality is like chocolate to brownies – they just go together. But then I hit tenth grade and had to grapple with geometry. It didn’t make sense to me. I struggled with conceptualizing shapes, areas, and all those angles.
Later in life, as I began to run my own home, I hit the same brick wall when trying to decorate. I loved picking the colors and putting together an organized layout. But when it came to visualizing, I would freeze. It became a running joke that I was the return queen. I would purchase a pillow, rug, or lamp, but after bringing it home and realizing it didn’t work, back to the store I’d go.
Practice Makes Perfect
The spring my second daughter moved out of our family home into her own apartment, the three remaining kids at home had the opportunity to shift bedrooms and each have their own room. My seventeen year old daughter and I took the opportunity to redecorate her room, and off to the store we went! After three hours of shopping, we had the entire room in two carts. Bed in a bag, curtains, lamp, artwork, and decorative elements in shades of burnt red, blue, and yellow. It was bright and beautiful.
Returning home, we began rearranging the room. By nightfall, this teenage gal had what looked to be a showcase room. So how did I go from return queen to tackling a room in a matter of hours?
Practice, practice, practice!
Practice involved a frequency of conceptualizing, trying, failing, and sometimes succeeding. This is not a parallel or linear path traveled once, but more like an octagon I tried to draw as a teen, full of random lines trying to connect, going round and round.
Routine of Practice
How do we take the conceptualization and put it into practice? Looking at the many times hope is mentioned in Psalms, David seemed to have a routine he practiced when he needed hope. He remembered the great things God had done in his life, as well as the promises of who God is, and used those as a catalyst, regardless of what he saw or what was happening.
I try to practice this as I spend time each morning in prayer pouring out my concerns to Christ, diving into the Scriptures to find promises, and journaling my concerns, past experience of Christ’s faithfulness, and hope for each day.
Find a routine that works for you and practice, practice, practice!