The sun comes up, the sun goes down and the moon reflects its glory. Day after day this cosmic dance unfolds before an audience of stars that flicker with their approval. Daily we rise and daily we go. We go to work, to the store, to the ball game, or even to church. Rising and going seems to be our routine and somewhere in there we mix into this routine a little bible study and maybe even some family devotion. This too becomes routine.
There is a place and a purpose for routines, but there is also a danger in them. For when our routines are thrown into disarray by any number of possibilities, we panic as if to say that life itself must be lived according to our routine. We tend not to look at the interruption as one that may in fact have been sent by the one who makes heaven his throne and earth his footstool.
I for one have been caught up in this whirlwind of routine, especially now (having started school in September) my life must be scheduled and I cling tightly to my routines. I rise early and go to work, I leave work, I go home, I spend an hour or so with the family, I go to school, I come home, I help put the kids to bed, then I too retire for the evening; only to do all over again the next day. My wife, she has her routines as well…we all do.
The danger in routine exists when we begin to treat God as something of a routine as well; expecting him only to show up in a certain place, or a certain time. Should we treat God with such contempt? As if to say to him you’re out of place and it’s not your time? “You see God, right now I am spending my scheduled block of time with my family, I am to meet with you Lord on Sunday, I will see you then, at your proper place.”
This routine has in itself the potential to lead us down a path of despair. By not allowing for the frequent interruptions in our lives, and instead scheduling God into our calendars, what we find is that we soon begin to miss him dearly. We wonder, where has he gone and why has he gone? Before long we find ourselves wandering in the wilderness, waiting for our next encounter. Hoping against hope that He will come again with that same water of which we first drank, and that satisfied our thirst.
Like I said, routines most assuredly have their place, but when routine becomes so common place that God himself must make an appointment, we can be sure that we are taking those first steps into a wilderness of despair. Look expectantly for God to interrupt your life, and examine closely his reasons.