I don’t know about you, but every once in a while I need a system check. A system check, at least for me, is a chance to look at what I am doing, and how I am doing it. I try to, sort of, deconstruct how I am living from God’s perspective. Obviously, I can’t see all that God sees, but by first asking His help through the Holy Spirit, I can see a lot more.
My goal in a system check is to be sure that my choices line up with God’s will, and that I am worshipping effectively in my life every day. My key verse is Deuteronomy 6:5…
You shall love the Lord your God
with all your heart,
and with all your soul,
and with all your might.
This is the goal and the standard. Trust me, I have never gotten the “All Clear”. But as I continue to look at the standard and make adjustments, I see progress, and that is what I am looking for. Long ago I figured out that living Deuteronomy 6:5 perfectly won’t happen until my system checks on earth are over. Until then, I will keep pressing towards the goal.
My system check consists of three key questions that I ask myself.
1. What is the deepest desire of my heart?
2. How do my actions and words reflect this desire?
3. Are there things that distract or detract from my pursuit of this desire?
I know what the answer to the first question should always be.
What is the deepest desire of my heart?
To glorify God, to make Him look as great as He is, by my choices, my words, and my actions.
If, when I honestly answer this question, I don’t answer this way, then I have a problem with an idol. There is something that I have promoted above God in my heart and it needs to be torn down. One of the main reasons that I ask this question fairly often is because it is so easy to get caught up in something or someone and replace God with that person or thing in my heart. Most often the things that I find fighting for first place in my life are “good things” they just aren’t God. The things we do for God always have to come after our worship of God.
Basically, if I find that God’s glory has actually not been the deepest desire of my heart, the system check is over and the troubleshooting begins.
If, however, I have God’s glory as my deepest desire, I can ask the second question,
How do my actions and words reflect this desire?
This is when I begin to look at how I am using my time, and what my words and actions say to the people that are watching my life. This includes my family, friends, and anyone that I encounter. I want my life to ooze the love of Christ. I have found that God will bring certain people and situations to mind that need to be considered. He usually shows me where my choices haven’t been the best. He also will bring to mind situations where I have have done the right things. God is always a gentle teacher when I come humbled and prepared to learn.
The third question,
Are there things that distract or detract from my pursuit of this desire?
This question basically has me looking at where my time is going. Am I laser focused on my goal, or do I wander off too often into things that take away from glorifying God? This is not saying that there is no time to watch a movie,play a game, or just have fun. This is saying that if these things are getting in the way of my glorifying God, I need to consider changing something. God may ask me to give something up for Him.
After I have sorted out these three questions with God, I always feel much more focused. I know that God and I are walking together and we have the same heart.
Do you need a system check?