Recently my wife and the Lord have told me that it’s time to start saying no to things. When life gets so busy that you’re double booking, forgetting things you’ve agreed to and are living exhausted all the time, you’re doing too much. Life has lots of demands by itself, then we start complicating it by adding things to it. If we’re not careful, we can get so caught up in doing things for our families, our friends, our churches and others that we forget to stop and rest. Worse yet, we can miss our quiet time with God.
Busyness is not necessarily a sign of Godliness. In our minds, it’s easy to equate the two, but there is a point where we just need to stop, sit down and feed ourselves mentally, spiritually and emotionally. When Jesus went to the house of Martha, Mary and Lazarus, Martha was busy preparing food and serving her guests. She was doing what was necessary because she had guests, but she was stressing herself out too. That’s when she noticed her sister wasn’t even helping her. Instead, she was just sitting there listening to Jesus.
When Martha complained to Jesus, His reply to her was also to us. In Luke 10:41 He said, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered and anxious about so many things” (AMP). Each one of us should substitute our name for hers right there and know that God is ok with you slowing down, clearing your calendar and removing the things from your life that distract you from Him. Life isn’t about being busy all the time. It’s preparation for eternity. When you get to Heaven, you’re not going to be asked how busy you were or how much you accomplished. You’re going to be asked how well you knew Jesus and how well He knew you.
Throwback Thursday is a feature I’m using to help build some margin into my schedule to pursue other ventures. Each Thursday I’ll be bringing you a previously written devotional that still speaks encouragement to us from God’s Word.
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve been a person on the go. I didn’t like naps then, and I don’t like them now. Instead of forcing me to take a nap, my mom would have me come inside each day between 1-3. It was her way of getting me out of the heat and forcing me to sit down. These days, that’s my wife’s job. She tells me when I’m too busy or when I need to take a break. I giver her push back like i gave it to my mom. Taking breaks and naps just seem so unproductive and and feel like a waste of time to me. The truth is that they are probably the most productive because they reenergize, refresh and refocus me. In the moment I can’t see that, but it’s true.
When I take what John wrote about Jesus saying that all the books in the world couldn’t contain all the things He did during those three years of ministry, and I read how the crowds constantly followed Him seeking healing, I know He was busy about His Father’s business. From sun up to sun down, day in and day out, Jesus was followed by crowds seeking something from Him. They followed Him in boats, walked miles around the Sea of Galilee just to meet Him on the other side. He was busy, busy, busy, but He also took time to rest. Even when the disciples came back after being sent out to preach, He made them rest. Mark 6:31 says, “There was such a swirl of activity around Jesus, with so many people coming and going, that they were unable to even eat a meal. So Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Come, let’s take a break and find a secluded place where you can rest a while’” (TPT).
When’s the last time you took a break? I mean a real break where you stepped aside, quit thinking and worrying about everything and just rested? If you can’t think of it, that’s been too long. God designed your body and your brain to need a break. Jesus constantly took them and He was still productive. God took a break after creating everything just to show us we need one. The word “Sabbath” means “to stop”. It’s not that the things you’re doing aren’t important. It’s that it’s more important to stop often. Your life and health are more important than the things you’re doing. If you’re busy like me, you’ll need to schedule your break and put it on your calendar. Taking a break is just as godly as being busy.