Busyness

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Are you busy? Why? Sometimes my busyness is the result of multiple opportunities to make an impact. When I am busy in a healthy way, I sense a peaceful fulfillment from using God’s gifts in me to make a difference. I sense His presence and pleasure. And at the end of those days, I rest well. That’s a healthy busy.

But busyness can be unhealthy and detrimental, too. Remember the story of the storm?

A great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking over the boat, so that the boat was already being swamped. He (Jesus) was in the stern, sleeping on the cushion. So they woke him up and said to him, “Teacher! Don’t you care that we’re going to die? ”

He got up, rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Silence! Be still! ” The wind ceased, and there was a great calm. Then he said to them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith? ” Mark 4:37-40

Sometimes my busyness helps me hide. Busyness keeps me from facing my fears, leaning into my deep desires and living faithfully in Christ. At times, busyness is a tool employed to avoid contemplating the state of our heart, mind, soul and strength.

Jesus knew how to rest and be busy. He practiced the art of trusting in the Father— whether feeding thousands after a full day teaching or resting amidst a storm. His heart and mind were convinced of the Father’s purpose and care for Him.

The disciples in this story are busy bailing, fearfully and frantically avoiding death — so they think. Without a minute’s hesitation for contemplation, they fitfully wake Jesus from his sleep and accuse him of a lack of care. Busy bodies blaming Jesus.

On one level it seems prudent, logical and necessary to wake up Jesus – help us bail dude! But Jesus doesn’t commend their sense of urgency and busyness; He says their fearful actions indicate a lack of faith. Had they taken even a moment to consider who was in the boat? Had they taken so much as a minute to look at their fear and ask ‘what’s really going on within me right now?’ No. And Jesus said that is faithless.

Busyness (that they clearly justified), and their reactionary response to their circumstances, had blocked them from contemplating the deeper matters before them. Who is in my boat? What is it I fear? Why? What is the deep and holy longing I truly desire?

These are hard questions, and busyness offers a dodge. But they are essential questions we must ask ourselves. In answering them, we are hopefully led to more self-awareness, growth in faith, and most importantly knowing the Man in our boat — Jesus.