Due to COVID-19, a lot of Americans are “Sheltering in Place” – ie., We’re all in a self-made quarantine! And for a lot of us, it’s a massive change. For example, many of you are adapting to your kids being home (and it’s driving you nuts). It’s O.K. to admit it!
As a pastor, I’ve been trying to establish a new “Sunday Routine” for our entire church. In addition to Sunday mornings, we now have a Wednesday Night Briefing as well as “Microcampuses” (Digital small groups) that meet on Sunday mornings (before church) as well as Wednesday nights. And why? Because, spiritual routines can save lives! Without a weekend service, there are hundreds of people who are falling back into their “unspiritual routine.”
In other words, right now, we’re all going through a grand scale change in our routines! And if you were a workaholic who’s forced to rest, that change is good. But, for many of us, the new routine is the OPPOSITE of good. For example, many of our kids are turning into Neflix/Youtube Zombies. Or, others of you are adapting to working from home. Sure! It was convenient for a few days but…WOW. Now, it’s next to impossible to separate work and play.
So, if this is you, I believe this is God’s word to you: Take time to reflect and create a Quarantine Routine!
What is a Quarantine Routine you ask? Well, it’s like a temporary life-plan that will help you make healthy choices throughout this crazy season. And it’s quite simple. Take some time to reflect on the following three categories:
If God was to suggest an adjustment in your life today, what do you think he would tell you? If you’re not sure, click here for the Holistic Health Assessment Worksheet! After you do this, take time to imagine what your “best life” would look like if this area was thriving. How would you feel? Take time to journal about what your life could be like.
What one change would make 60-80% of the difference? In your marriage, parenting, schedule, physical / emotional / spiritual health, what small routine would help you? Or, to put this another way:
What 2 minute routine would prove to you, you are becoming the person God wants you to be? (Eg. What 2 minute routine would prove to you, your marriage is becoming stronger? What 2 minute routine would prove to you, your kids are staying productive & healthy?) – Make a list of simple little two minute routines. Don’t worry about creating grandiose goals. Rather, the point here is simply to establish some healthy new habits. (You need to establish a habit before you can improve on it.)
Write down a “Where & When?” for each of your 2-minute routines. Research shows, when you add a simple “Where & When,” to each of your goals, you increase your likelihood of execution by 55%. Habit researchers call this an “Implementation Intent: “I will work out at my home on Monday, Wed. & Fri. every week at 8am.” Or, “my kids will do 2 chores every day (at a time of their choosing before dinner). AND, If my kids watch a spiritually enriching show (see here for ideas), then I will allow them to have [X] amount of youtube time.”
“But Peter, I’m not a schedule type person.” Yes you are! You’re just a “non-schedule” schedule type person. You absolutely have a schedule! But is it working for you? ie., Is your system helping you become the person you need to be? And just as important, is it helping your family become the people they need to be?
Now, if you’re smart, you’ll realize: I could be doing this assessment ALL THE TIME. And yes! My wife and I reassess our lives in every new season. We all need to prune our lives and reassess our goals on a regular basis. Indeed, I have several weekly “reflection rituals” like this one that help me stay in sync with God. (And by the way, if you want to take this to a whole new level, be sure to check out my blog, https://www.peterhaas.org/6-golden-rules-for-creating-your-life-plan/)
But, here’s the truth: This quarantine could be the beginning of the greatest season of your life. I know it’s hard. I realize there’s a lot of change and fear in the world right now. But, I believe that God has a plan to take your life to a whole new level. And, if we take the time to let his Holy Spirit speak, this will be a new beginning for you!
Love you guys!
Ps., When you meet with your Micro-campuses this week, take a screen shot & post it online with the hashtag #QuarantineRoutine ! People need to know God’s church is alive. And just maybe, they’ll join us this Sunday!