Tag Archives: too busy

How to escape the crushing busyness of life, Part 2 – The Solution

21 Oct

So last week I introduced the sermon from Luke 10:38-42 by asking if you feel defeated by the busyness of life?  Do you feel that way?  Do you wish you could escape the busyness, find some freedom, some space some peace?  As we looked at the story of two sisters, Mary and Martha, Jesus taught us how to find that space and peace.

What we learned is that Martha was distracted by the busyness of life, by lesser things. Not bad things, but lesser things. Houses need to be cleaned and cared for. Cars need to be maintained. These are important things. But like Martha, these things can distract us to the point of being overburdened and anxious. But there is something greater. That something greater is making space for Jesus in our lives.

Jesus said that Martha was worried and anxious over lesser things, and that Mary had made the right choice by focusing on learning from Jesus.

Jesus tells Martha that Mary chose better, and that will not be taken from her.

How many of you have desired to grow closer in your relationship with Jesus, but you’ve thought “I can read more from the Bible, when the kids are out of the house. When school is done. When the big project at work is finished. When the project at home is done. In the winter when there is no yard work.”???

We have great plans for growing in our relationship with Jesus, and yet we put it off. We can be distracted by lesser things. How many of you watch spend lots of time watching shows on Netflix or TV, but barely give any time to reading the Bible. Sitting at Jesus’ feet? Listening to him?

How many of you spend loads of time on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram or Snapchat, but the Bible app goes unused?

Are you distracted? Are you over burdened? What are you doing with those burdens?

Are you more like Martha or Mary? Again Jesus says that Mary chose better.

So how do we change? We have to actually do something. We have to choose better. We have to make changes. We talk a lot about these things. We talk about not wanting to become legalistic, and so then we do very little. But we can joyously, graciously, non-legalistically change how we spend our time so that we sit at Jesus’ feet more and more often.

It could mean lowering your standards for how clean your house needs to be so that you can free up time in your life to spend with Jesus.

It could mean less TV and more time reading your Bible.

It could mean, like the guy in the video last week suggested, changing how busy your family is, particularly how much the kids are involved in. Less running around can mean more free time for family and Jesus.

As a family, make it a priority to have dinner together.   And bring God into that. In our house that means pulling out the Bible and reading a chapter after dinner. It’s nothing fancy. Usually we don’t discuss the chapter.  I just read.  One small piece of advice I would recommend is that you use a contemporary translation. I use The Message version because it is so readable and easy to understand.

Finally, make participation in worship, Sunday School and small group a priority for your family. It is in those times where we gather together with a community of believers to hear from the Lord together.

How to escape the crushing busyness of life, Part 1 – The Problem

16 Oct

How many of you have heard yourself say lately “I am too busy!”?

How many of you have thought “I’ll never get this all done.”?

How many of you have felt like there aren’t enough hours in the day?

Remember how the Good Samaritan made time for the injured man. But the Levite and Priest did not make time. I want to repeat a few words from my sermon last week. “It would have been amazing if the priest or Levite would have stopped. But they didn’t.

People have speculated why. It is good to talk about because there are plenty of times when we could help out in a situation and we don’t. In our day, one of the major reasons we walk by on the other side, is that we are so busy. Our lives are so jammed that there is no time to be a Good Samaritan. Or at least we feel like there is no time.”

In fact one person has suggested that this is the biggest problem the church of today is facing:

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What do you think?  Is he right?  Do you feel the crush of busyness in your family?

Busy lives are not necessarily better lives. In fact your busy life and mine could be a huge problem. Our busy lives could be doing great damage to us.

But it is possible to make a change! In the next episode in Jesus’ life we’re going to meet two people, one who is distracted by the busyness of life. One who has made a change. There is hope for you. If you are living a crazy busy manic life, we are going to learn how to change, how to free up space.

So if you want to get a preview, read Luke 10:38-42.   Then join us at Faith Church for worship where we’ll look into this further!

Breaking the 80/20 Rule (or Is Radical Christianity really necessary?)

10 Oct

80-20-rule-buttonAt Faith Church I’m convinced we have broken the 80-20 rule.

You know the adage that “20% of the people do 80% of the work”?  It is a complaint that usually a small group of people take on the lion’s share of the responsibility in an organization, while the majority of people slack off.  Often the 80-20 rule comes up in volunteer organizations like the church.  It can leave the 20% in a frustrated fuming place because they’re tired of “doing it all”, while the 80% free-load into relaxation.

Not at Faith Church.  We break that rule.  And it is an awesome thing to see.  I think we have 80% of the people serving very actively.  Maybe it could be said that we follow the 80-90 rule.  80% of the people doing 90% of the work.  Sure there are some people that work more than others, but I am so impressed at how many people are giving of themselves on committees, volunteering for ministry, and serving others in personal ways.  There is also the hidden service that happens that I know nothing about, because people want to serve the Lord and want no recognition for themselves.

So I’m really encouraged by Faith Church!  And yet, in our next passage in 1st Corinthians, we could potentially hear Paul asking us to serve even more.  This week’s sermon is on one verse, and not a very long one at that.  After breaking down his teaching on the resurrection in four sections, this week we look at the final verse of that resurrection chapter, 1 Corinthians 15, verse 58:

Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

It seems like Paul is saying we should use the 100-100 rule.  100% of the people do 100% of the work.  Everyone always giving themselves fully!

Sound impossible to anyone?  Sound unrealistic?

How many of you see all the stuff going on at church and think that you would love to help out, but your life is so busy there’s no time?  How many of you think 100% is ridiculous, and you just move on, maybe feeling guilty, maybe feeling pressure, and having conversations with yourself about why not serving more is okay?  How many of you think that when the kids grow up, then you’ll give more time to the Lord?

Why is Paul so fired up anyway?  It’s these kinds of verses that make Paul seem a bit too radical for our tastes, right?

So what do we do with radical teaching?  We normally call it “radical” and throw it away.  We’re looking for “balanced” teaching.  Teaching that fits with an already busy life.

But should we dismiss Paul?  Is it possible that he was right and we are wrong to caricature him as radical?  What could it possibly mean to “always give yourself fully to the work of the Lord”?  Didn’t the Corinthian Christians have jobs and families too?  They couldn’t all be hanging around teaching Sunday School all the time, right?  Or were they always on the street corner preaching the Gospel?  How did they keep food on the table?  What do we do with this one single, little, but intense verse???

Join us at Faith Church on Sunday as we take a look at this further.  We’ll look at what it means to serve God in the midst of crazy busy lives.

standfirm