(Routine has its roots in route meaning: “traveled way”)
In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun,
which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion,
like a champion rejoicing to run his course.
Ps 19:4b-5 NIV
“. . . [I]t might be true that sun rises regularly because he never gets tired of rising. His routine might be due, not to lifelessness, but to a rush of life.” G. K. Chesterton
I am not the sun, so I do tire of rising. I get the doldrums. I dig in my heels and resist routine. I want out. I want to do nothing. But alas, when I have nothing to do, I get depressed. I tire of it as well. I need a change of perspective.
The definition of routine is about as rousing as the forcing of myself to engage in my daily routines, especially when I get in a funk like this. I want to blame my blues on the lack of blueness in the sky. I tell myself, it’s just winter, I always get down this time of year. I am not in a full blown state of despair, but I’m just saying-- it’s difficult to stay motivated.
The psalmist and Chesterton both have something in their poetry and prose that I think is lacking in my perspective of routine. I need a little imaginative, role playing to help me get up and face the day. To engage in some story making. To embrace adventure as my credo. If I would wake up and remember God has a role for me today, a worked-out part, maybe I would be a little more enthusiastic.
Others have traveled this route before, and have made it through the dark days. I need to surround myself with their stories and sayings. And take to heart that Jesus, himself, walked these weary ways of the flesh; he feels my frustration. Yet at the same time, he is the only one, who can lift my head and cause me to rise like the sun. He gives me the “rush of life” at just the right moment. And gently reminds me to not try so hard. To let the routines take care of themselves, to stay on the traveled way is his invitation at this moment.