Picking up rocks.

Last week, at the start of our 90 day countdown, I asked you to pick up a fist-sized rock each day.

Here’s why:  We’re talking about changing habits, about becoming more spiritual, becoming more like Jesus. And people usually do that by doing something “spiritual”, trying to read the Bible every day or pray every day. But that’s hard for some of us. Because if we don’t complete whatever the action is, we feel like we’ve failed two ways, one at following through on a commitment and two, at something that matters to God. So immediately, we’ve failed ourselves and failed God.

With a rock, we’re doing something small. Simple. Possible for almost everyone. There’s nothing inherently spiritual about it.

And think about the reasons you did or didn’t pick up rocks this week. You put it on your calendar. You remembered at the wrong time or when there weren’t any rocks around. You piled them in an obvious place so you were reminded. You couldn’t decide what counted as fist-sized, or whether each rock had to have meaning.

All of those are part of making intentional changes. And picking up rocks gives us a safe place to learn what works.

I know that we can identify all kinds of spiritual metaphors around rocks. But at the moment, I’m thinking less of metaphors and more of learning to take small steps (or pick up small stones.)

For the next week, I want to change things a bit.

This week, when you pick up your rock, think of someone who annoys you. Not an enemy, not really, but a person who gets on your nerves. Then, when you put the rock down, on your desk, in your car’s console, say “I’m not going to throw this at you.”

And this week, I’ll write about doing hard things.

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83 days til August 10.

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About Jon Swanson

Social media chaplain. Author of "Lent For Non-Lent People" and "A Great Work: A Conversation With Nehemiah For People (Who Want To Be) Doing Great Works." Writer of 300wordsaday.com. I help people understand. Understand some of the Bible. Understand what Lent can be about. Understand what it means to follow.