Thursday, March 10, 2016

Why "I'm too busy" isn't good enough anymore

I get it. You're busy.

But I just can't take it anymore.

If I hear one more person say, "I can't commit to [Bible study, prayer time,  fellowship,  going to church,etc], because I'm just too busy," I just. might. lose it.

Maybe you're a mom, a career woman, or both. Maybe you have a thousand and one responsibilities, and every day feels like a struggle to stay above water.

Maybe I just don't understand because I'm not as busy as you.

But guess what? We are all really busy.

This is not your typical "Just be less busy," speech.

We've all heard people harp on not being too busy before. They say, "Slow down! Focus on the things that matter." And you're over here like, "What do you think I've been doing? Hello-oh. My [insert career, kids, marriage, etc] is important. That is why I'm so busy taking care of it!"

So, hear me out. What you are killing yourself for is worthwhile. It's important. Your efforts are valid. I'll never tell you otherwise.

But that doesn't change the fact that Christ isn't first in our lives anymore.

This is not ok. It's never been ok, and the fact that so many people have the same problem should scare you, not give you permission to put Christ second, third, fourth, or not at all. Just because everyone is doing it, doesn't forgive your actions.

Busyness: the deadly illness that has infected the modern Christian.

No matter how busy you are, where you spend your time comes down to your priorities.

So when you say you are too busy to go to a Bible study or church, or to do a quiet time, what you're saying is that your faith is not worth the investment.

I'm not trying to be mean or mightier than thou. I've been there. I'm there often. We've all been there too much.

But that doesn't make it ok. Not by a long shot.

As Christians, we are taught that God should come first in our lives, even before what is most precious to us, like our husbands, families, careers, and alone time.

We hear it so much, it stops meaning anything. We forget that putting Christ first is not just something we write down in our sermon notes on Sunday, but an everyday act of worship.

We don't have to be perfect. That is impossible. But we do have to strive to be perfect like Christ was perfect. We do have to put him first, and we definitely have to stop nodding our heads when we hear that Christ should be first in our lives while doing the opposite.

When you say you don't have time, you're too busy, or life is just too crazy, you're playing the victim, as if life is happening to you and you have no control of your own actions. This is preposterous. You know, and I know, that we have quite a bit of control over ourselves. So stop pulling this excuse out of your back pocket. It's not working for you anymore.

Urgency versus importance:

Dwight Eisenhower once said, "What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important." These are such wise words. While I'm sure he was not talking about faith, it applies so directly to our spiritual lives. We must make time for Christ, his Word, his work, and his people.

As Christians, we are here on earth to glorify our God. I don't know about you, but sometimes, heaven feels so far away, and that makes me think I have time to put God first later, you know, after I have the perfect job and the kids are all grown, or maybe just tomorrow when life isn't so hectic.

If we are not careful, our daily busyness will destroy our faith. Our distractions might look shiny and big and important, but when compared to the cross of Christ, his love for the lost and broken, and our role in saving souls, all our so-called distractions and very important to-do lists fade into nothingness. Quite frankly, when I look at my life and what I've placed as important, I feel foolish. My job as a Christian is so much grander than my role as a wife, friend, or employee.

Friends, the cross and it's message are important. But when heaven feels far away, we forget we are running a race. The finish line is most likely far away, but this is no excuse to put our faith on the back burner. Christ, our faith, and lost souls are too important to wait.

Let's change our priorities by changing our schedules.

So how do we actually change our priorities? How do we really start putting Christ first?

We have to take action. We must take the time to change our schedules to make him first.

My suggestion? Start small. Don't try to wake up an hour early, or read a whole Ann Voskamp book in 1 week. You'll only get burned out. Start with something you can do in 10 minutes. Start by praying when you're in the car by yourself. Start by laying out a Scripture to memorize on your bathroom counter or by your computer screen. Let these small tasks snowball into bigger things. Build habits into your daily life instead of making drastic changes all at once. A little bit each day turns into a lot in the long run.

Whatever you do today, don't do nothing. Start small, grow big, and put Christ first for real this time.