Summary: In the Great Commandments, Jesus shows us how to prioritize our busy lives.
Busy, Busy, Busy
October 16, 2004
“Busy” is the hallmark of our times. I don’t know how many times I ask people, “How are you doing?” and the answer, more commonly than not, is “Busy”. It has become somewhat of a ‘badge of honour’ to wear, it seems. I’m not asking people how busy they are…I genuinely want to know ‘how’ they are doing. That doesn’t have a lot to do with how busy they are, really. This obsession with being ‘busy’ is, actually, one convenient way to keep from relationships. If someone says to you that they are busy, you’ll back away from trying to take any of their time; I’ll back away from you if that is the answer. What is being said is often, really, “I’m too busy to stop and form a relationship with you.”
Many live lives that are out-of-control, where circumstances, including work, run them around. Without question, we all have a lot to do. Just think of some of the activities that fill our lives:
- work- about 9 hours/day
- travel- to and from work- maybe 2 hours/day for some/many
- sleep- hopefully 8 hours/day, but not so for most in North America
- eating- hopefully a couple of hours/day
- time with family
- church- for us, that’s about 4 hours/week or so- maybe a bit more depending on travel time involved
- Quiet time
- Transporting children to school and other activities
- Lawn & garden care
- Keeping vehicles clean and maintained
There are many other activities. How are we to get control of our lives? This is a big question for many. Work runs many. Family runs others. As Christians, we’re no different. In fact, we can have a worse time, because we have spiritual needs and obligations added to all the rest, so our lot can be, actually, worse than that of others, unless we get some things straight. How are we to order our lives, or prioritize our lives? How can we get everything done that we need to get done in our lives? We need to understand our priorities, and work around them.
Matt.6.33- gives us our big, over-arching thrust of our lives. We are to be seeking God’s Kingdom. This is to be a dominating concern of our lives. Now, your neighbour might not have to worry about this. He/she might give no concern to the matters of God’s Kingdom and family. However, you, because God has interfered in your life and brought you into His family, have to be concerned about Kingdom matters. This gives us all a dominating concern for our lives. But where do we go from this? This seeking first is all well and good, but how does it translate into reality as we go through our days? How does it translate into handling all these things we have to do, and handling them as well as, or better, than the unbelievers who might live around us?
I believe Jesus answers this in the two great commandments He gave us for our lives, and He shows us how to prioritize our lives in a way that works and actually simplifies our lives.
Matt.22.36-39- we see our first areas of concern, which tell us where we need to focus in our lives.