The printer in our staff office is my enemy… to the point that the thought of needing to print something gives me anxiety. Honestly, I do not mix well with most technology but printers especially seem to harbor a certain vendetta against me. My personal struggles aside, I think we all have experienced printing a single sheet and then panicking when forty unwanted sheets are spitting out at you. After regaining composure and murmuring a quiet apology to the family of trees you just gave a pointless end to, you reset the default settings.
Default settings run our lives in many ways from the alarm clock preset to the same time every morning or the GPS set to avoid traffic. This week, I’ve been fixated on this concept of my own personal “default settings”.
What if instead of fear, I was set to courage? What if instead of doubt, I was set to faith? What if instead of self-preservation, I was set to generosity?
The fixation began last week when I realized that my default setting is often set to undesirables. One small glitch in the schedule and I sat there impatient, annoyed and wondering why it was impossible for anyone to get anything right ever. Needless to say, I was being irrational. The Holy Spirit whispered gently and lovingly something along the lines of, “You’re being ridiculous, calm yourself” and I sat there embarrassed. The next morning, after a couple hours of internally beating myself up about my lack of maturity, I sat and listened as the Lord spoke to me about this concept of my “default settings”. He opened my eyes to these areas where through life or my own defenses, I had reset myself to a setting He never intended me to be on.
I started to take a closer look at the unsavory areas of my heart. What would it be like if instead of immediately reverting to impatience, I was patient and gracious? What if instead of fear, I was set to courage? What if instead of doubt, I was set to faith? What if instead of self-preservation, I was set to generosity? It’s the same lesson we all hear about allowing the Lord to refine us, but this new visual somehow struck a chord with me. So, I began to pray. With unashamed honesty about my faults, I gave control over my “default settings” to the Lord, asking Him to change me from the inside out.
Did I wake up the next day perfect? No. Is there a glow about me and birds following me dropping rose petals as I walk? Not yet. But to be honest, I can feel a shift inside of me. Something about taking away the permission I gave myself to default to those ugly things and giving permission to the Lord to reset me has awakened something in me. I encourage you, friends, to do the same. Be gentle but honest with yourself and take a look at your “default settings”. Are there certain things you would like the Lord to work on in you, things you would like to be reset? I can’t promise you that it’s going to be enjoyable or easy, but I can promise you that the Lord is good always and in all ways.