Well, I have gone and done it again – thinking, that is.
I’ve had a single thought parading around my head all day “the burden of busy-ness”. So, as usual, when these thought-parades begin, I start listening because I know God is talking.
As an introvert, it is very easy for me to get into the pattern of work, home, work, home, church, work, home…how many others can say the same? I’m not naturally social and therefore I don’t naturally seek out social activities. If I make plans, I make them in advance in order to mentally prepare for the event, because to me, it is an event. However, there are times, though few and often far between, where I recognize my need for social interaction because, after all, God created us for fellowship.
Why am I telling you this? Well, in the past, one of the reasons I have used to avoid large social gatherings is because I was always too busy. Being busy is a great strategic tactic for both the introvert and the extrovert to either avoid social interaction, or draw attention to it. In today’s world, being busy is a status symbol as well. Not surprisingly, this busy-ness has infiltrated the church.
As the Church, our churches tend to keep us busy and here is where the devil gets real sneaky. We are kept so busy serving in ministry, attending church events, small groups and conferences that we miss the every day conversation of different people, especially people we don’t go to church with. God did not create us for fellowship only with the folks where we go to church, He desires for us to fellowship with all Believers. It is in this diverse fellowship where we hear the wonderful things He is doing in, around and through the Body; it is in these conversations where we are challenged to either speak up or step up; it is in laughing with others where all are refreshed and encouraged; and often, we discover new talents and gifts when we step out of our comfort people-zone.
John 10:10a says, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.” We must remember that thieves are sneaky, they use stealth and cunning to take what isn’t theirs. Satan is a thief, he steals time, energy and resources by keeping us busy. Serving the Lord in our local churches is not a bad thing, it’s what keeps the local church alive, but serving in the local church to the extent that fellowship with friends, relatives and believers from other churches is forsaken is a problem. Always remember, Satan will always mix a little truth in with his lies, and we must practice discernment at all times.
I learned years ago that I needed to balance my busy-ness. I still don’t have it all figured out, but I’m working on it. My heart breaks for all the friendships that are no longer face-to-face fellowship because of the burden of busy-ness.
With this phrase in my heart, I am going to make a point to keep my busy-ness in check. If I ask to hang out, know it is a legitimate and genuine request for fellowship. You have something I need, and I have something you need – it’s called each other.