Beating Busy

Hello Pearl Press ladies! I am happy to be joining you this week on The Pearl Press, BUT I will be candid. I am sharing this week based on what I have been learning and thinking over in my personal Bible study, so that means we are processing together, okay? So I WANT to hear your thoughts in the comments below or over on Facebook!

I have been finishing up 1 and 2 Thessalonians which has a lot woven throughout about Christ's return. It always leaves me with the idea of filtering my life through the lens of His return. Of course the normal things, such as remembering what really matters, living in light of eternity, and staying expectant and ready. If you need reminding, Jesus is coming back! So be encouraged and have hope in that. Stay ready for His return at any time and be expectantly waiting. Okay now that we got those implications out of the way, here is what it has left me meditating on lately, and it was also our #MondayMotivation for this week if you saw it on social media: "Don't be busy, be productive."

I think we can all be guilty of being busy, but not really being productive, right? I know I can. Reading about the return of Christ makes me start taking note of the work that is left to be done before time is up. It resembles that time with you had people coming over to the house at 7:00 and it's 6:15 and you are standing in the hallway thinking about the food that still needs to be finished, the toys that are still on the floor, the table that needs to be set (Forget the floral center piece, there is no time for that now.), and of course you still need to shower and get ready. Yeah, that's the picture. Though we don't know the time of Christ's return, there is still plenty of work to be accomplished before His arrival. It can feel just as impossible as the household tasks I mentioned. There is so much to do and really there is so little time to do it in.

You may feel that sentiment on a daily basis in your own life. Like the to-do list will never get completed, the laundry will never get clean, you will never get ahead and as put together as you want to be, etc. The truth is there is busy-ness that fills each and every one of our lives; things that we MUST get done. But as I have been processing what it looks like to live life effectively knowing time is limited, here are some of the concepts I have arrived at so far:

Like I said above, everyone is "busy." I'm "busy." You're "busy." Our kids are "busy." Our world is "busy." But do the things we are busy doing produce anything good in our lives, in others' lives, or in the world? Is our busy-ness producing anything? In all actuality, we can be super productive without being burdened by busy. It is possible! There are people out there, you may read their books or listen to their podcasts or troll their Instagram feed, who are productive. Obviously they are producing content and inspiration for you and I to read, hear, and see. They are the people who you may comment on their Instagram post and think, "I doubt they see this, they are too busy." Or you tweet them thinking, "If they respond I am gonna freak!" You already understand that they likely won't be able to respond to everyone. But the truth is, it isn't because they are too busy. It's because they realize if they spend time commenting and replying, they won't have time to do what they find more productive and important to their life and family. (But don't worry if they do retweet or respond to you, I will still have a fan girl moment with you! lol)

What I am really trying to get at is the reality that a lot of what is busying our days, weeks, months... lives.... are things that consume our time but are unproductive. We can get busy with things in life that actually don't matter. Ouch. That stings a little doesn't it?

Knowing myself the way I do, I know that I can become a victim of busy. A long to-do list and a full calendar fuels me with a sense of importance and purpose. Wait, did I just say that publicly?? I did. But I wonder, do you relate with that too? The truth is I am important. You are important. I have purpose. You have purpose. BUT it has nothing to do with completed tasks or full schedules. Rather our importance and our purpose is based solely on the value and significance Christ has placed on each and every one of us. You can't increase it and there isn't a person or thing who can decrease it. Face it. You're a big deal. And you don't need your iphone calendar, planner, or mommy group to tell you that. Because God wants to remind you of that every day Himself.

Busybodies. You have heard of it, right? You may even know one! The Bible talks about them several times, warning us against becoming one ourselves. You may picture someone more like Lucy from I Love Lucy, meddling and always getting into trouble. Whatever your perception of what it looks like, being a busybody comes down to being busy doing things that don't matter and lacks in the things that do. I mean come on, I have definitely been lacks in doing things that matter, maybe because I am dreading taking the time for it or whatever, but at times I have found myself much more motivated to scroll social media than to do my Bible study (insert monkey covering his mouth emoji here). But can I drop a little truth bomb here for all my sisters?

Sisters, if we are wondering why we aren't seeing the good things in our life, families, communities, etc. that we are wanting it is time to ask ourselves, "Did I do the work to reap the harvest? Or was I  busy doing other things?" 

I work with teenagers and recently I explained to them that there are good things and then there are the best things. Sometimes we have to trade in the good in order to get the best. The same thing is true with our time and attention. There are LIMITLESS amounts of good things we can fill our day with. Spending time playing in the floor with you babies is a very good thing. But clearly you can't spend your whole day that way or else food wouldn't get made, errands wouldn't get ran, work wouldn't get done. Having family dinners is a good thing to bring stability and connection to your family. But maybe the best thing you could do tonight is invite a college student from church to join your family and love on them in Christ. 

You see we need to fill our time with tasks that produce and are trading the good for the best. Some times that means not volunteering and impressing all the other parents at school with your super mom abilities, and spending an hour in the afternoon with an elderly neighbor who needs companionship. Some times it means throwing out your list of errands and taking a moment to encourage someone through conversation. Surprise! That list of errands will keep for tomorrow. ;) The promise that we can bank on is that if we will do the work of sowing seeds, when harvest time comes around we will reap the benefits in so many ways.

The final thing I have been left meditating on from the Word is this reality here: Busy-ness can be the greatest disruption of what God wants to do in and through our lives. Man oh man, is that true. Based on what I have been reading in 1 & 2 Thessalonians busy-ness is one of the key things that will distract people to the point that they will not be watching or ready when Jesus returns for us. Friends, that is a scary truth right there. It is scary to me because of course I don't want that for my life or my family! And secondly, it is scary to me because I know how easy it is.

It is so easy to get caught up in the busyness of life, whatever stage of life you are in, and it takes a once in a blue moon sermon to remind us JESUS IS COMING SOON! {Random question you can answer below, when was the last time you heard your pastor preach on Jesus' coming? No criticism here! But we do need to be talking and, as the Bible tells us, encouraging each other with this truth.}

I want to very briefly use this example from the Bible that has haunted me. It is the example of Samson.

"But he did not know that the Lord had left him." That is haunting. Samson was clearly distracted, busy being the public celebrity that he was, all at the sacrifice of his Lord.

Ladies, let us not get so busy with life that we are distracted from God's work in our life. I pray that this will be your reminder to realize the treasure you have in your heart, the Spirit of our living God. He is working in you and He wants to work through you, if you will just give Him the time of day. Love in Christ.

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