Discipline & Doing the Right Next Thing

Last week I pulled up a quote from my favorite Elisabeth Elliot book, Disciple: The Glad Surrender. It has been several years since I’ve looked at it – my memory is reading it in our previous house, so I guess that would be over 6 years!

So, I picked it up again and have been revisiting it. It is simultaneously convicting and encouraging. I love how Elisabeth Elliot never pulls a punch, yet remains gracious.

She begins her section on time by writing:

Time is a creature – a created thing – and a gift. We cannot make any more of it. We can only receive it and be faithful stewards in the use of it.

Then she gets serious:

There will be time, depend on it, for everything God wants us to do.

In case you missed it, she restates it later:

There is always enough time to do the will of God.

So she offers us this diagnostic:

When we find ourselves frantic and frustrated, harried and harassed and “hassled,” it’s a sign that we are running on our own schedule, not God’s.

When we find ourselves frantic and frustrated, harried and harassed and

After all:

Frustration is not the will of God. Of that we can be quite certain. There is time to do anything and everything that God wants us to do. Obedience fits smoothly into His given framework. One thing that most certainly will not fit into it is worry.

Do we believe that obedience fits smoothly into His framework? I know I have a hard time letting go of my to do list when things don’t shape up the way I wanted them to, but of course she addresses that:

But the lists must be reviewed daily with the Lord, asking Him to delete whatever is not on His list for us, so that before we go to bed it will be possible to say, “I have finished the work You gave me to do.”

So she offers us this prayer for those inevitable days (every day?):

Lord, when there are interruptions, it seems that the disposal of the time I had planned so well has slipped out of my hands. Help me to remember that it has not slipped out of Yours. In Your hands, these unexpected things will be fashioned into an unexpectedly beautiful design.

Elisabeth Elliot even addresses schole!

People wish they had more leisure time. The problem is not too little of it, but too much of it poorly spent.

I highly recommend this book if you’re feeling the need for a loving, spot-on kick in the pants.

Get more great quotes & recommendations at ladydusk’s Wednesday with Words!

5 Responses

  1. Catharina

    Thanks for the recommendation! Sounds like a book I need!

  2. Kortney

    Elisabeth Elliot was absolutely formative for me growing up. When she died, Julie Bogart posted a memory of meeting her during college…Elliot was scheduled to speak and got roped into hosting a “Ladies Tea.” From Julie’s description it sounded like EE wasn’t pulling any punches OR remaining gracious:) Made me laugh!

  3. Heather

    Elizabeth has always been a favorite- I need to release this one! Great thoughts here!!!!

  4. Abby

    Mystie, I seem to have trouble getting your blog to update, on my phone or my home computer. I know from your email that you have newer posts than this one and I can access them through the links, but this is the most recent one that loads if I just go to your home page. Does anyone else have this problem?

    • Mystie Winckler

      I’m sorry, Abby! I wonder if you have a caching problem on your browser. Reload the page or try a different browser for awhile and see if that does the trick.