Illusory Follies Andrew Flanagan's Blog


Good Thoughts for this New Year

“People do not drift toward holiness. Apart from grace-driven effort people do not gravitate toward godliness, prayer, obedience to Scripture, faith or delight in the Lord. We drift toward compromise and call it tolerance; toward disobedience and call it freedom; toward superstition and call it faith. We cherish the non-discipline of lost self-control and call it relaxation; we slouch toward prayerlessness and delude ourselves into thinking we have escaped legalism; we slide toward godlessness and convince ourselves we have been liberated.”

D. A. Carson, For the Love of God, Volume Two (Wheaton, Ill.: Crossway, 1999), 23.

(thanks to Nate Hoeldtke for forwarding this via email)


Done? Good, now start again.

That's how I feel these days. There's always been "overhead" stuff that I have to do. You have to take showers and dress and clean up after yourself (at least somewhat). You have to spend time getting ready for work and driving to work and reading emails and just doing all the boring monotonous things that no one enjoys but are required.

Well, I've now hit the point where about the time I'm wrapping up all the "overhead" tasks and ready to do something useful I realize I'm out of time. More "overhead" tasks crowd in around me and it's time to brush my teeth and get to bed early so I can wake up early and repeat.

It's terrible.

Granted, I have time to write this blog entry. But you know what? I've sadly actually tried to allocate "overhead" time to write to my blog! I guess I feel as if it's a journal in many ways and so writing in it is part of this complete healthy life.

But this makes me think: maybe it's not that I get nothing but overhead done but rather that I've put far too many tasks into the "overhead" category merely because they repeat frequently. Nowadays, virtually everything I do is scheduled. I schedule my oil changes, how many times we vacuum the house, every odd job and maintenance task is updated on my calendar if I can think of it. My daily status report for work is scheduled (and I receive a horrible email warning me about it every day). If Sarah and I want to have fun, we generally schedule some event weeks in advance and I shuffle some of the chores off of that day in the calendar and reallocate them to make a little extra room.

So maybe it's not about overhead, maybe it's about spontaneity and the realization that precious little can be done on the spur of the moment anymore.

I hate routine. Maybe I should write a program that takes my tasks and in an intelligent way re-arranges them to surprise me without totally destroying any sense of order.

Hmm... that sounds like a program that would probably have to pass the Turing test. I think what I'll do is make an entry in my calendar to write this program. Maybe next Tuesday. That sounds good.