What is your usual response to this question: “How are you?”
Many—if not most of you—probably answered with something like this:
I hear it every day—sometimes out of my own mouth. Over the last few years, I’ve noticed the shift. It seems we can’t be “fine” unless we are also busy. And most of us are busy. Really busy.
Busy and Proud of It!
We’re up before the sun, pound the pavement or the keyboard all day long, and spend the after-work hours doing housework and helping with homework or cheering at ballgames and volunteering. We’re crazy busy and proud of it.
Our American culture values busyness. We tend to see a “busy” person as someone who is in demand, talented, and indispensable. “Busy” is good. Downtime is bad.
The Danger of Busy
So what’s wrong with “busy?” Everyone is doing it. It’s just the way these days, right?
Our society encourages us to push the limits of our time, resources, and physical ability in order to do more, make more, and be more. And we teach our children to do the same.
Often, these limit-busters are positive, beneficial activities. But over-pursuing has a price. We’re too busy for unhurried conversation with our families. Too busy for physical rest and renewal. Too busy to foster existing relationships or develop new ones.
But the greatest danger of “busy” is that little room remains for God. No time to soak in His presence. No time to seek His guidance. No time to respond to God when He calls. No time to develop deep intimacy with the only One who can meet our every need.
I’m not saying we should run our calendar through the shredder. God’s plan for us includes good works. But God also designed our bodies. He knows our limits. He created us with the need to rest, refresh, and relate.
God desires our lives to be “full,” not busy. Busy is packed with activity—some purposed by God, but a lot purposed strictly by us. Full, on the other hand, describes a life filled up with the plans, purposes, and peace of God. A full life will be characterized by relationships, service, good works, and time. Time to focus on things that matter for eternity.
I challenge you to do something that could change your life, your relationships, and your faith. Commit to moving from a busy life to a full life. You can start by seriously evaluating the way you spend your time.
Once you’ve made some time cuts, make a fresh commitment to your relationship with God. Regular time with Jesus will help you leave busy behind and fall headlong into the full, abundant life He promised!
Would you describe your life as busy or full? What activity takes up the most time?
Kathy Howard is the author of five books including Fed Up with Flat Faith: 10 Attitudes and Actions to Pump Up Your Faith. You can find out more about her books, speaking, and find free resources on her site.