I hope you are doing well! Yesterday my family and I had such a blessed Sabbath! Yesterday’s message was so necessary for the times we live in, as it had to do with handling our busy lifestyles! How many of you are busy? I know I am! And sometimes that busyness is a hindrance to our spiritual growth as well as to our mental and physical health too! So I pray you are blessed by the notes from the sermon yesterday: “God’s Antidote for Busyness”!
Let’s dig in! And don’t forget, always start any study of God’s word with prayer for guidance and understanding from the Holy Spirit ?
Any personal thoughts outside of what the pastor shared will be marked with a *.
“God’s Antidote for Busyness”
We live in a busy world! At every stage in our lives, whether we are a college student or even a retiree, somehow we are always busy!
+ The pastor shared that he always envisioned retiring as sitting outside in the rocking chair on the porch sipping lemonade, but that somehow all the retirees he met, said that they are still so busy, that they can’t even imagine how they had time to even work before!! Amazing! LOL
+ Busyness is almost a disease! The level of busyness that we live with today is contrary to our nature.
+ Now we can see one of the reasons God created the Sabbath for mankind – so that we could have time to rest!
– Psalm 127:2 – God gives His beloved sleep/rest!
+Now, the Bible does talk about work! We are encouraged to be diligent workers and not to be slothful (lazy).
+But there is the other side of this matter of work, where the Bible teaches us not to over do things, and to be temperate and have time to rest! There is a B A L A N C E ?
– Psalm 23:2 – God leads us to lie down and to be restored!
+ So yes, God does have an antidote to busyness. He wants us to rest in Him! Let’s use an acronym to help us to remember it! Let’s unwind, God’s way! ?
God’s Way to R.E.L.A.X:
Realize my worth:
+ Today, it is very easy to get confused about our worth.
– For example, we often equate ourself to our career or talent. And these things can keep us super busy simply because we find our value in that! In a general conversation of getting to know someone, one of the first questions that come up is “what do you do for a living?”. And how does the response usually go? “I am an engineer.”, ’I am a teacher.”, etc. We sometimes do the same with our talents. I am a singer., I am an artist., etc. Why do we not simply say, “I do engineering work for a living.”, ”My job is to teach young people.”, or “I have a gift of music.”, “I have a special talent of drawing.”, etc.? We really tend to internalize our position, career or talent as who we are!
+ Some internalize it so much, that when they lose their job, they literally become depressed, lose their sanity and even take their own lives, because they saw all/most of their value in their position!
+ BE CAREFUL not to confuse WHO YOU ARE with WHAT YOU DO!
+ James 1:18 – God made us the most important of all His creations!
+ Matthew 6:26 – God loves and takes care of the smallest of animals, yet we are of more value then they are to Him! He really loves and values us.
+ On the 6th day, the crowning jewel of God’s creation was man – humans – us! And we were made in His image! That’s pretty special! (Genesis 1: 27)
+ The worth of an item to someone is how much they would pay for it. So what was God willing to pay for you? What did He pay for you? The life of His only Son! Our value cannot even be numbered, for we were bought with the precious blood of Jesus Christ! That’s limitless value!
+ When we look horizontally and compare ourselves to other people we will always lose that battle. There will always be someone who does something better than you or has a higher position than you, etc. But when we keep our focus vertical on God, we realize our true worth, and won’t fret so much about trying to prove ourselves or out do others, for we know that we are so precious to our Heavenly Father – not because of what we do, but simply because He loves us so much that He even sent His Son to die for us!
Enjoy what I already have:
+ Ecclesiastes 3:13 – We should enjoy what we have worked for! What we have is a gift from God!
+ Ecclesiastes 4:6 – It is better for us to have a little in one hand with peace of mind, then to be so busy with both hands trying to “chase” the wind!
+ We need to be content with what God has provided, and not discontent and concerned with what He has not provided.
+ We often put ourselves in a trap! What God doesn’t provide you with, you don’t need or He knows it’s a trap for you. Sometimes we overwork ourselves to get what we think we “need” and what God has not provided, when really those things are only going to harm us in some way, whether spiritually, physically or mentally! And then later down the line, we wish we never even got what we did! *God knows best. Be content!*
Limit my labor:
+ Ecclesiastes 10:15 – The foolish work to the point that they weary themselves so much that they can’t even find their way to the city or home!
– *This is an interesting verse, but I like the thought the pastor bounced off of it. He shared how sometimes we work so much that we become foolish and don’t know when to stop and even “go home”! And might I add, not just if you work away from home! Sometimes we work from home (like myself) and we just want to keep going and going, and we don’t know when to “check out” mentally and have family, home time!*
+ Exodus 20:9,10 – God gave us 6 days to work, but set aside the 7th day Sabbath to be dedicated to Him!
– “Sabbath” means: “day of rest’
– Mark 2:27 The Sabbath was made as a gift for us and not us for it! It’s not a burden, but a gift and a delight made for us and God! The Sabbath was made by your Creator, for you to spend time with Him!
– Focus on these 3 R’s on the Sabbath:
+ Rest my body
+ Recharge my emotions (mental capacity to handle things)
+ Refocus my spirit
– Our culture is constantly pulling us away from God! But God has called us to be in the world, not of it! We are in the war of this great controversy between Christ and Satan! We need to keep our mind focused on Christ that we may be found on His side – not on Satan and the world’s side!
Adjust my values:
+ Ecclesiastes 4:4 – Many people work so hard simply to outdo their neighbors/other people because they envy what they have! But it is useless, because it’s like chasing the wind! *Someone will always have “more” than you or something “better” than you when it comes to earthly possessions!*
+ Mark 8:36 – It is not worth it to gain the whole world and to use your soul in return!
+ A lot of times we have mixed up priorities. We spend too much time with what is not important.
– The pastor shared that he remembers seeing bumper stickers that said “He who dies with the most toys wins.”! *W O W* Friends, are we taking our earthly possessions with us to the grave?! Will there be a UHAUL coming behind our coffin at our funereal with all of our things to burry with us? A fancy boat won’t come with you to your grave! *So why would we over work and literally kill ourselves, spiritually, mentally and physically, to get so many things?!*
+ Many of us live by lists – whether literal physically written lists, or mental lists of what we have to do in a day, and in what order we have to do them in. If God is not first on the list, you have the wrong list! If God isn’t first, more likely than not, you have a good chance that you won’t get around to Him later in your busy day! *Don’t get this mistaken – God is to be our life! He is to be first, last and best! But this is specifically speaking of direct, one-on-one time with God through prayer and Bible study!*
– God often communicates with His children through that “still small voice”, and if we don’t make that special quiet time to spend with Him, we won’t hear Him! And then we will complain that we don’t hear God speaking to us :-(. Be careful of letting your busyness take the place of God and your time with Him!
eXchange life’s pressure (the pressure I put on myself & that the world puts on me) for God’s peace:
+ Matthew 11:28 – Jesus calls us, who are tired from the burdens of sin and the stresses of this life, to come and receive His rest.
– When we come to Him for help, He makes our load light as we live a life dedicated to serving Him and others by sharing the love of Jesus in meekness and humility. This is how we receive true rest!*
+We need to constantly re-evaluate what we are doing (*and why we are doing it too!)
– Even in church, we can get diverted by doing the wrong things (what we aren’t called to do) for the right reasons (things that are good in themselves)!
* God wants us to have peace of body, mind and soul! Yes, many people physically, mentally and spiritually wear themselves out from being so “busy”! We need peace in all of those areas, and God wants to give it to us! *Will we let Him? Will we re-evaluate our lives and put our “busyness” aside for time with our God and for the peace that comes from only Him?*
This message has personally really inspired me to re-evaluate the priorities in my life, and to make sure that I truly keep God first, last and best in all that I do! Sometimes, even with striving to do full time ministry and to get the business started up again, I can truly over work myself with the pressure I put on myself. Yes, God has called me to do a work, but He has also called me to be temperate and to do it in is His time! As I work diligently, I am also to wait on The Lord and His timing, keeping that peace that only He can give as I take time away from the danger of “busyness” that I may rest, recharge and refocus so I may be a better servant for Him and others! I pray you were blessed by this message as well!