Consider: “The Common Rule”

In The Common Rule: Habits of Purpose for an Age of Distraction, Justin Earley describes four weekly and four daily habits he developed for his personal use. As a collective rule, the goal is to take “the small patterns of life and [organize] them towards the big goal of life: to love God and neighbor.” Here are two brief excerpts from the introduction:

…I had no idea how much my ordinary habits were shaping my soul in the most extraordinary ways. I had no idea how much my life was being formed by my habits instead of my hopes. Most of us don’t, of course, because habits are the water we swim in.

You’ll find that once new Common Rule habits are established, by definition they don’t take up time and mental space. They work in the background. They’re designed to free up your time, create meaningful space for relationships, turn your energy toward good work, and focus your presence on the God who made you and loves you. That is not constricting; that is liberating. You were made for it.

From there he goes on to describe the principles behind each purposeful habit and tips to implement each habit so that it fits your life and priorities.

These books are set here as possibilities for you to explore. Posts and links are not endorsements or paid publicity.

Consider: “Beholding and Becoming”

Beholding and Becoming: The Art of Everyday Worship by Ruth Chou Simons is a beautiful exploration of beholding God in worship and becoming more like Him in daily life.  Here are two excerpts (pgs. 196 & 199) from this book:

Perhaps, like Martha, in our task-mindedness, we forget that rest — ceasing from work and being still before the Lord — is not a luxury; rest is productive.

How often I look at the mess in my home…and roll my eyes at the idea of rest… But God Himself, who rested after six days of creating the heavens and the earth, didn’t set the example for rest to simply give us a break but rather to be our rest.

Like Martha, we spin and toil anxiously over “many things,” and often forget to choose the portion that is most necessary. We think if a luxury to rest because we think everything depends on us. The Martha mindset puts my own abilities and resources on center stage, but a Mary posture looks to Jesus.


In our present cultural glorification of busy, we can choose to see our to-do lists, calendars, and schedules differently. It’s not that Jesus didn’t expect work to be done, meals to be made, and tables to be set; He simply called Martha to recognize opportunity for best in the midst of all that was good. All work, no matter how needed and useful, becomes anxious toiling if not fueled by our most-needed sustenance: rest in the Lord.

These books are set here as possibilities for you to explore. Posts and links are not endorsements or paid publicity.