This was quoted at our recent OM retreat and it seemed everyone in the room could relate. Busy is a word we throw around as if it’s a badge of honor or something to be proud of, as if saying we are busy somehow equates to a level of importance. However, nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, when we are “crazy-busy,”it’s also likely true that we are not good at creating boundaries in our lives. Busy-ness is often a sign that we are allowing life to happen to us, rather than designing a life around what brings us our purpose in life. Busy indicates a life out of control, versus not an indication of importance.
Brené Brown says, “Crazy-busy is a great armor, it’s a great way for numbing. What a lot of us do is that we stay so busy, and so out in front of our life, that the truth of how we’re feeling and what we really need can’t catch up with us.”
The most successful people I know are not busy. They are purposeful. They live a life with margin. The strongest men and women I know in faith are not busy. They know that a life pursuing Christ requires a schedule with space to breathe. Without margin, we are consumed with self—running from place to place, living a frantic pace that doesn’t allow for investment in the lives of others.
What about you? Give an honest assessment of your life. Are you too busy? Does your life feel out of control with “obligations” rather than time and purpose? Do you say “yes” to every request while avoiding confrontation with yourself in times of silence? Do you say “yes” to every activity or volunteer position at church in an attempt to earn something?
As the quote above from Adrian Rogers declares, if Satan can’t make you bad, he will make you busy. This reminds me of the story of Mary and Martha of Bethany. The Bible tells us, “Martha was busy and distracted with much serving,” while Mary was purposeful in spending time with Jesus. When Martha complained to Jesus that Mary was not helping He replied,
“Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her” (Luke 10:41-42.)
Are you spending time with the Lord—seeking Him in the secret place, in prayer, and pursuing Him in intimacy? Or are you too busy?