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How We Got So Busy

The Lord your God wins victory after victory and is always with you. He celebrates and sings because of you, and he will refresh your life with his love. - Zephaniah 3:17

It's almost Christmas.  It flew by, didn't it?  At least, that's what I have said and heard so many say around me.  But, has time really flown by?  Realistically, time moves at the same pace that it always has.

We don't move at the same pace, though.  If you are like me, you move at a pace that would make your younger self cry.  We run to here, then to here.  Gotta do this, gotta do that.  There is always something else calling for my attention.

And yet, I feel like I get very little accomplished.  How is that?  How did we get so very busy?  An even better question is, "How will we stop being so busy?"

I have some ideas about both.  How we got so busy AND how we can fix it.  Here we go.

1.  Our kids became our gods.  If a god is the higher power that gives us direction, then many of us have placed our children upon the god-like throne.  In an effort to prove to our children that we love them, we have mistakenly given them the driver seat of our lives.  People say "family first", when they really mean "kids first".  So, how do we fix it?  Simply put, we must remind ourselves where kids belong in the family structure...at the bottom.  It's not that we don't love them, it's that we DO love them enough to remind them that the world doesn't revolve around them.

2.  We put our money in the wrong places.  The nation's GDP (Gross Domestic Product) has been rapidly increasing and that gives economists cause to celebrate.  Unfortunately, the GDP is driven by people like you and I spending our hard earned money on goods and services produced by others.  To put it plainly, the economy is growing because we are spending money that we should be saving, donating or investing.  The answer to a growing economy is ALWAYS more work for its citizens.  Busy, busy, busy when we work 60+ hours per week to pay for things that we probably don't really need.  The fix is easy...LESS.  Get that word into your mind.  LESS.  I can do with less.  I can spend less.  Because less is MORE.  More time.  More energy.  More of what really matters.

3.  Happiness is emphasized over goodness.  Ask anyone about their goal in life.  They will all say the same thing.  Be Happy.  It's even written into our nation's founding document...the pursuit of happiness.  What if I told you that the idea of happiness is what is making you miserably busy?  Do this and I'll be happy.  Do that and my spouse will be happy.  We all have to be happy.  No.  God does not ask us to be happy.  He asks us to be good, like He is good.  When we begin to do what is right, rather than what seems fun, we will find time freeing up all over the place.  Pursuing righteousness will never cause us to be busy, but it will often gives us contentment (peace) like we have never known.  Not too shabby.

4.  Our inability to trust leaves us doing everything alone.  We have all been burned before.  Most of us can tell you the who, what, when and where about it.  This causes us to lose faith in people and even in God.  As a result, we only trust what we can do ourselves.  Unfortunately, we  can't do much before we just get too busy.  So, here is my final idea.  Let go.  Let someone else do something that you thought only you could do.  Let your spouse make the bed, even if it doesn't look as good as it does when you make it.  Give a co-worker a chance to do that project, so that you can focus on the one you are already working on.  Let go (and let God), if I want to give you the cheesy version.  The scripture says that He fights on our behalf and that He has given us His victory.  There really is no need for us to struggle like we do.  We should put our trust in Him.

Again, these are just some ideas.  There are probably flaws with each of them, but that's okay.  I have plenty more flaws where these came from.

This Christmas, I pray that you will take a breath.  Take a minute.  Rest in the Lord and learn what it means to be UN-busy.  God bless!

Matt Monyhan

Matt Monyhan is the Lead Pastor of Real Family Church. He has been in ministry for almost 2 decades and is a husband and father of 2 sons.