I’ve been reading a book about busyness and holiness. It is called An Unhurried Life: Following Jesus’ Rhythms of Work and Rest by Alan Fadling (thank you Crista!). In it, Fadling discusses how we can be overworked yet unproductive. When we try to guess at what it is God wants us to be doing, we step off His path and onto our own. We can be busily producing work that will be burned up in His fire. I want my work, my efforts, my life to yield works that withstand the fire – work that is everlasting in its outcome.
Fadling poses the question, “What if I learned to work from a place of unhurried abiding?” Abiding with God every moment of my day rather than rushing through this task so I can get to and through the next several tasks on MY list. God has revealed to me, time and time again, how He is at work around me. If I have eyes to see and the TIME to participate with Him, He is pleased and glorified by my obedience in the moment. Never are any of these things on MY list. He had planned in advance the good works for me to do. Everything from taking meals to our church family members who were in need to answering a phone call from a sister in Christ who is trying to turn her life around but struggling against the enemy. I could see these things as an inconvenience or interruption to MY to do list, or I can view them as they truly are, an appointment, an assignment from God – a task on HIS to do list. Those are the tasks that withstand the fire and matter for eternity.
When is the last time you put yourself in time out? When have you sat quietly before the Lord – no music, no reading, no distractions, just silence and waiting for Him to speak to your heart?
When is the last time you remember enjoying a day at work sensing God’s presence with you throughout your day?
Are you teaching your children to fill up their schedules with activities, sports, work, church to the point that they have little to no rest time? Does sitting on the porch for 30 minutes bother you because there is so much you SHOULD be doing? If you sit still for 15 minutes do you fall asleep?
God is calling to you. He wants to sit a while with you. He wants and even commands you to rest. Jesus is your example. How did He work and rest? He was never hurried. He rested with the Lord God so much that his disciples and others had to search for him. If we aren’t seeking God’s work and ways and we are filling our schedules with our work and our purposes, we aren’t working for eternity, we’re working ourselves into burnout; ineffective for God’s kingdom – exactly where satan loves for believers to be – BUSY.
Are you investing in things (house, car, school, clothes, vacations, etc.) or are you investing in people? Are you working hard to gain a bigger bank account or retirement account or are you working hard for eternal purposes? Are you willing to radically change your lifestyle to live a life that God can use and that brings glory to Him?
Slow down. Sit with God for a while. Let Him set your to do list. Live in the unhurried abiding with Jesus.
Be encouraged. Be courageous. Change what God shows you needs to be changed. Press on.