‘You are organized but undisciplined!’ Papa said.
‘ What? Really?’ I asked totally gobsmacked.
‘Yup!’ he replied.
‘How can one be organised and undisciplined? That is just absolutely absurd.’ I said. The silence was a clear sign He wasn’t going to answer directly and I would have to dig deep.
By all standards, I am the super put together, get everything done well girl. For the longest time, I was a career planner, good at my job with a slew of happy clients. I repeatedly run projects on large and small budgets and with long and short timelines. I have lived with lots and little and ensured we never lacked. I have solved problems for a living, walked with people, challenged others and changed lives. How on earth could I be undisciplined? This one hurt.
How can I be organised and undisciplined? Undisciplined? I would never have said that of me in a thousand years then this conversation with God. Questions were racing through my mind. How was this even possible? What was I doing? What wasn’t I doing? What marks haven’t I reached? Had I even hit one mark? Did I have a clear picture of the world around me? What could I do better and what would it produce? I was determined to find out what this was about.
As I worked through the situation, things caught my attention.
First was the Longman, definition of discipline. ‘Discipline is a way of training someone so that they learn to control their behaviour and obey rules.’ Fair enough I thought to myself, fair enough. There is a lot I could change right there. I had been trained by God and family but I hadn’t stayed with the content long enough for it to really take root. In some cases, I had even walked out of class.
Second is the quote by Elbert Hubbard, “Self-discipline is the ability to make yourself do what you should do when you should do it, whether you feel like it or not.” Ha!!! This one was big. Many times if I didn’t feel like doing something I walked away until I felt like it. I didn’t want to eat fruit, I walked away. I didn’t feel like writing I put the pen down or shut down my machine. It often took the threat of a deadline or unhappy team player to get me to work.
Third, Vocabulary.com defined discipline as follows; ‘When you have discipline, you have self-control.’ Did I have self-control over all areas of my life? Was I wholly dedicated in all areas or was it selective to matters external?
I can run circles around you if you drop an idea for an event and have a work plan in my mind in minutes but getting it on paper is often another matter altogether but it will come out beautiful. I can see a project through to the end no matter the drama if I believe in it. I can write just about anything I set my mind to in a time span I decide. I can walk with people and encourage them to believe and move mountains without breaking a sweat. I am bull-headed about people’s things, I continually excelled at work and in areas of ministry, but when it comes to the things that concerned me; that is a whole different story.
You see, discipline is driven from within and it doesn’t matter how disciplined or organised I look on the outside, if I am undisciplined on the inside or in my personal life then I can be organised and undisciplined.
There it was in full view and it was true: I was organised but undisciplined.