- If you’re not busy all the time you are lazy.
- All successful people multi-task.
- If you haven’t got anything else in your diary, then you ‘should’ do this activity.
- I have heard from God that we should ….. so I’m expecting you to commit to it.
- It’s better to burn out than to fade out. (Yes somebody did actually say this!)
- God’s ‘work’ is more important than anything else & demands that we sacrifice ourselves – and our families. (Please note – it is the narrow interpretation of the Lord’s ‘work’ that is often the issue here, not the fact that we seek the kingdom first.)
We live in a world where our effectiveness as human beings is measured by the busyness of our schedule; a full diary has become a badge of honour which announces to anyone paying attention that we are important, successful and sought out.
Our dedication to our jobs is shown through our willingness to arrive early, stay late and work through our lunch breaks (often without pay); and is often a pre-requisite of being hired. Even in the church a person’s spiritual health & commitment to the Lord is frequently measured by their involvement in all aspects of the church programme.
When did we get so busy? Man has always had to labour to provide for the essentials of life. But modern busyness is more than that – it is a frenetic attempt to crowd the days, to shoe-horn more and more into our schedules until something bursts.
Everything has speeded up over the last century producing instant communication & access to information, ease of travel, labour saving appliances and the world at our finger tips. In this age of instant everything, we expect to live in the fast lane. And so we fit more in to each 24 hours than any other generation. But it comes at a cost….
The cost is to the health of our bodies, and the wellbeing of our souls; to our primary relationships which need an investment of time, and in particular to our walk with the Lord; (and actually to the fulfillment of our unique destiny). Just as our environmental clutter creates noise, so do our over-busy diaries. And that noise often drowns out other sounds: the creaking of relationships, the distress of loved ones, the protests of body and soul, and ……… significantly, the voice of the Lord.
Jesus was often hard-pressed during His three years of ministry; but we sometimes forget that unlike today, He was tied to one place and time; nothing happened with modern speed - He had to walk everywhere; and without the benefit of electric lights a lot of night-time activity was curtailed. We also read that He constantly withdrew from the crowds, either to spend time with the disciples or alone with His Father.
Mary sat down attentively before the Master, absorbing every revelation he shared. But Martha became exasperated by finishing the numerous household chores in preparation for her guests,
so she interrupted Jesus and said,
“Lord, don’t you think it’s unfair that my sister left me to do all the work by myself?
You should tell her to get up and help me.”
The Lord answered her,
“Martha, my beloved Martha. Why are you upset and troubled, pulled away by all these many distractions? Are they really that important? Mary has discovered the one thing most important by choosing to sit at my feet. She is undistracted, and I won’t take this privilege from her.”
[Luke 10: 38-42 The Passion Translation]
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