The easiest time for me to pray is in the morning when I’m driving downtown to work. I turn off the radio and open up a channel to God. I talk about how I’m feeling and think aloud about what I’ll need to face the day. And then I’ll start free-associating about the things for which I’m grateful. Usually I focus on a different category every day—family, health, treasure, talent, safety—because I could go on for hours but the trip to work is only 20 minutes.
For the last five minutes of the drive (which I know by passing 12th Street on the way to Washington Street), I think about what I can do during the day to be helpful to others. Some days I’m inspired by a particular situation, and some
days I’m at a bit of a loss. So thank goodness for the Boy Scout Law. I had to memorize it back in sixth grade as a member of Boy Scout Troop #174, and in my adult life it has become extremely handy as a quick reminder for responsible behavior.
Here’s how it goes: “A scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent.”
Most problematic situations can be addressed with at least one of those adjectives. Lately I’ve been focusing on “kind,” because of my tendency to become annoyed with co-workers as my work piles up over the course of the day. It’s fascinating to me how focusing on that word for a few minutes in the morning helps me catch myself in the afternoon when I feel myself getting cross.
When I learned that our stewardship theme this fall was “Blessed to Be a Blessing,” I thought of my morning routine. It’s not a perfect interpretation of the phrase (although I invite you to look up Genesis 12:2 in several different biblical translations and see how much variance there is the wording), but I certainly spend time counting my blessings and then focusing on how I can be a blessing. Perhaps I will
add an addendum to the Scout Law over the next couple of months: “A scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, reverent and a blessing.”
How can YOU be a blessing today?