“Sorry, I’m busy!”
How often do we say those three words? If you’re like me, too often.
In our society, being busy is often seen as a badge of honour.
Busyness is associated with success. And we all want to be successful, right?
“This, then, is how you ought to regard us: as servants of Christ and as those entrusted with the mysteries God has revealed. 2 Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful.” I Corinthians 4:1,2 (NIV)
“The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray. Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” I Peter 4:7-11 (NIV)
The way I read my Bible, God doesn’t call us to be busy; He calls us to be faithful, to serve others to bring praise to God.
Remember the story of Mary and Martha?
Martha welcomed Jesus into her home as a guest. She wanted everything to be just so. She raced around preparing a sumptuous meal, checking her elaborate table setting, perhaps even removing the last speck of dust from the furniture. She was the perfect hostess according to our human perspective. BUT that’s not what the Bible says.
Luke 10:40 says, “Martha was distracted.”
Mary, on the other hand, welcomed Jesus by stopping everything she was doing and spending time with her guest. Mary “was seated at the Lord’s feet, listening to His word.” (Luke 10:39) When Martha came and complained to Jesus that Mary had left Martha to serve by herself, Jesus rebuked her:
“Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41,42
We mean well when we are busy; we really do want to serve others. The problem is, sometimes we don’t ask the people we are “serving” what they really want.
- Perhaps we work hard to earn money so that we can give our child a special gift. Does our child want the gift, or would he rather receive the GIFT OF TIME from us?
- Perhaps, like Martha, we work hard at being the perfect hostess. Do our guests want a fancy meal, or would they rather eat a simple meal and have us sit down and listen to them, like Mary?
- Perhaps we are busy ministering in Jesus name to people in our community and even around the world, but we are neglecting spending time making special memories with our own family.
Living in the moment, serving my family is something I’m still figuring out. There will always be more work to do, but some moments flit away, gone forever. If I’m not careful, I’ll miss God’s best. So, I try to spend time every morning in God’s Word. Most mornings I pray and jot down a “To do” list for the day. When something unexpected comes up, I try to pray and ask God if He is reorganizing my schedule so it matches HIS.
As I was working on this post, I stopped to make my family breakfast and help my children pack clothes for an upcoming trip. On my way to pack suitcases, this is what I saw:
A wonderful moment I almost lost!
The trail started in the living room, traversed the kitchen, and continued up the stairs. My initial reaction was frustration – I already had enough to do and my seven-year-old daughter was making a mess? Instead, I took a deep breath and asked her to tell me what she was doing.
“I’m making a trail of bread crumbs.”
We talked for a couple minutes and she smiled, appreciating that I understood her adventure. (She just studied fairytales at school and was re-enacting Hansel & Gretel.) She continued playing for a while and then cleaned up all her bread crumbs.
“Moments that matter . . . are as fragile as holding a snowflake on your warm tongue. Yet they are eternal somehow, like a purifying hot coal that brands your lips as if you were Isaiah, and you know you’ll never be the same.” –Gloria Gaither
- We Have This Moment Today – song by Bill & Gloria Gaither
- Making Memories with Your Kids – post by Stacey T.
- The Disciplined Pursuit of Less – post/podcast from Michael Hyatt
How do you balance work with savouring the special moments? Share your tips and memories with us!
Ruth L. Snyder and her husband Kendall continue to seek God’s wisdom in raising their five children, ages 7-17. Ruth shares her adventures in writing and photography at http://ruthlsnyder.com.