Just Do the Next Thing

This has been an overwhelming week- the grand finale of a bitter election season, and the kickoff to holidays that can sometimes feel more like a race than a rejoicing. In the month set aside for thankfulness, many Americans are thanking God for answering their prayers while others are reeling from the realities that they didn’t know were possibilities.

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If you are a homeschooling mama, this is also the time of year where the newness has rubbed off and you are knee-deep in lesson planning and checking, watching the SAT deadlines, planning meals for your small army,  folding laundry, and thinking about Christmas gifts. I could also add working outside the home for many of us!

Many of you will already be familiar with the poem that Elisabeth Elliot shared in her newletter in the early nineties. The first time I read it, I was so incredibly touched by its wisdom and beautiful simplicity, that I immediately printed it and used it for the cover in my homeschooling binder. Here it is in its entirety. Read it, take a deep breath, and just do the next thing. You’ve got this!

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Do The Next Thing

From an old English parsonage,
Down by the sea,
There came in the twilight,
A message to me;
Its quaint Saxon legend,
Deeply engraven,
Hath, as it seems to me,
Teaching from Heaven.
And on through the hours
The quiet words ring
Like a low inspiration-
DO THE NEXT THING

Many a questioning, many a fear,
Many a doubt, hath its quieting here.
Moment by moment,
Let down from Heaven,
Time, opportunity,
Guidance, are given.
Fear not tomorrows,
Child of the King,
Trust them with Jesus,
DO THE NEXT THING

Do it immediately;
Do it with prayer;
Do it reliantly, casting all care;
Do it with reverence,
Tracing His Hand,
Who placed it before thee with
Earnest command.
Stayed on Omnipotence,
Safe ‘neath His wing,
Leave all resultings,
DO THE NEXT THING

Looking to Jesus, ever serener,
(Working or suffering)
Be thy demeanor,
In His dear presence,
The rest of His calm,
The light of His countenance
Be thy psalm,
Strong in His faithfulness,
Praise and sing,
Then, as He beckons thee,
DO THE NEXT THING

-Author unknown

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