It all started with radio program. My husband and I were listening to a program and the host was pointing out the difference between saying “I have to” and “I get to”.
We wondered if a small switch in wording would really make a difference, so we started practicing it ourselves.
Instead of saying “I have to go to work” we might say, “I get to go to work”. Instead of saying “My day is packed because of all of the errands I have to run” we might say, “I get to check a lot of things off of my to do list today”. Instead of “Sorry, we can’t stay out late, we have to go to church tomorrow” it might sound like, “We don’t want to stay out late, we’ve got church in the morning!”.
Just a slight difference in wording, but it did help to redirect our thoughts and have a better perspective. We really do get to do a lot of things!
After we covered the basics – work, family, church, chores, bills, etc. – the habit spread to a deeper level.
Things like, “I get to pray”. “I get to give”. “I get to volunteer and serve”. “I get to love”. “I get to forgive”.
Getting to that depth really hit a nerve in my heart. How many times have I grudgingly done something because I had to? Because I ought to? Because other people were watching? Because it was costing me something?
How many times have I halfheartedly done something because I felt an obligation or a responsibility? How many times have I done something halfheartedly because it wasn’t fun or in the spotlight? Or even my job?
I don’t want to live like that. I want to live wholeheartedly – with.all.my.heart. I want to know that I give my best. Give my all. Jump all in. Get messy. I get to do it.
I’m kind of grown up now and I get to decide how I’m going to live. And I choose to get to live in delightful, wholehearted service with love and joy. I’m pretty sure it will cause my Heavenly Father to smile.
Lord, you have shown me how to live. You have described it in your Word. You have shown me in the lives of others who have lived for you – not having to do it but getting to do it. Please remind me of this during the tough times. Please forgive me when I forget. Help others see you in me when I live for you with all of my heart.