Just like that, it’s 2016–I mean 2017–and I have to do that shameful scribble on the last digit every time I write the date. I will do this for three months. Why am I like this.
Obviously the arrival of January means the departure of December, which means the departure of Dressember. Speechless, speechless, speechless. I won’t even tell you the total my team raised, or the total Dressember raised. Click the link here to see it: https://support.dressemberfoundation.org/team/98899
The best part is–while I will no longer be wearing a dress every day–donations can be made throughout the month of January.
If you know me, you know I can’t end one adventure without starting another one. Dressember was one month, but Seven will be seven months. Based on the book Seven by Jen Hatmaker (which you should definitely read), I will be trying to rid my life of most (all??) things that do not bring me closer to Jesus.
Some of my friends have already summed it up so wonderfully, so I’ll defer to them for explanations of Seven:
Here is what I’m cutting out for Month 1, Media:
I don’t want to sound dramatic, but I might die. When people say “We are so addicted to technology!” I just laugh it off because, after all, I don’t have children I’m trying to pry away from iPads and fling into the great outdoors. I’m fine.
But if I’m being honest with myself, Facebook is the one thing that has a huge grip on me. I’ll check it when I get up (telling myself it’s so the light will help my eyes adjust), when I eat (it’s so much easier than holding a book), and I’ll even randomly put a book down in the middle of a chapter to check Facebook for no other reason than “it’s been awhile.” Have I already checked Facebook two days into this challenge? You betcha. But I’ve tried to make excuses like:
- Well I need the links to blog posts…
- I just need to look at this one thing because I–HOLY CRAP THEY’RE ENGAGED?
- I need to send her a friend request so I can message her because I don’t have her cell…
I need, I need, I need. I need to cold turkey end my Facebook addiction. Please and thank you, Seven. Please and thank you, God. Please and thank you, Jesus and all of his angels, because that’s how much power this is going to take.
Less hard to get rid of, but still a hit to my vanity. How will people know how good my makeup looks today? How? Don’t even get me started on how many cute poses Gus has struck since the moment he knew I couldn’t post them.
I use this the least, but it’s the most pointless. When I was in high school and Snapchat was becoming big, I fought it for the longest time. “It’s a dumb app,” I’d say. “What’s the point?” Now I have the same convictions, but use it several times a day. Awesome.
And when I say TV, I really mean football games.
At 2:09pm on January 1, 2017, Bailey texted me:
Cause of death: not being able to watch Robert Mathis’s last game
At 5:19pm on January 1, 2017, Bailey messaged the Seven Council:
Okay, I’m revising my “Netflix/TV/Streaming” thing because the only time I really watch tv is at home with my family. The rest of the time I’m streaming stuff at school. So I’m going to give up streaming, but I’m keeping TV. (I’m telling you guys because I need to ease my conscience about it).
(And also because I just really want to watch football today okay).
So that’s how Day 1 went for Bailey.
But for me? I don’t want to toot my own horn, but I did pretty well. Maybe that has something to do with being asleep for the first 9 hours of the New Year, being at church/a wedding for two hours, and then taking a blessed 4.5 hour nap. As Kent says, “You can’t sin when you’re sleeping.” I may sleep January away.
Acceptable only if it’s for work or to build a relationship. Let’s face it, everyone I have a very close relationship with (besides Kent and Gus, respectively) lives at least an hour away. Texting is amoral. It’s only bad if the way in which you use it creates a negative effect on your life. For instance, if you choose to text instead of doing devotions. (Why does that sound oh so familiar, Kelly?)
6. Laptop Browsing
Browse for daaaaaays on Pinterest, Amazon, heck, even IMDb. No shame, but also, a whole lot of shame.
7. Non Christian Music
Again, (most of the time) nothing wrong with listening to secular music. But if I’m trying to build a relationship here, why would I not focus on the music that encourages that?
On Day -3 (December 29), Bailey texted me about our upcoming January road trip, saying that she was giving up music for the month and she hoped I was too…
Well I am now.
Seven has already had an interesting effect. Yesterday Kent and I got home to a house full of–what smelled like–gas. We called our provider and they sent someone out with a funky lookin’ magic gas wand that he said would “pick up your dog’s farts.” Everything was fine, apparently. But for the 20 minute wait that Kent, Gus, and I had to spend in Kent’s truck, I felt…itchy. Restless. Weird. A little nauseous, to be honest. My phone stayed in my pocket. I needed it in my hand, even to scroll through photos of Gus. Kent and I had to actually resort to–horror of horrors–speaking to each other. We played the alphabet game with the topic of dogs.
Other fun “soundbites” from Days 1 +2 :
-You guys. This is bad. I sat down on the toilet to use the restroom and out of habit pulled up Facebook on my phone.
-I just asked my friend to send me screen shots of a FB post that I can’t check since I already logged on [to Facebook once] today.
-I was reading over my mom’s shoulder as she scrolled through Instagram today…
-Goodness. Maybe we are actually all addicted.
Come, Lord Jesus. It’s possible we aren’t going to get past the “Less of Me” part of “Less of Me, More of Him” for the first few days or weeks because there is so much to detox from.
Stay tuned for more of our journey.
What are you doing this year to revolutionize your relationship with Jesus?