Who Said Efficiency was Next to Godliness? (I Did. I Was Wrong)
Okay, friends. It's January, that time of year where a lot of us are doing a bit more reflection and a lot less Netflix/Amazon/Disney+/gaming/vacations/etc. As I'm a busy and rather productive human/mom/pastor/wife/friend/neighbor, I've been working on a list of things to do since I was, like, 12 years old. Nothing's ever crossed off. But here was a reminder for me that came from my quiet times in the last couple days.
It's simply this: Jesus picked like *the worst* time in history to become human. He wanted to get the message of the kingdom spread, but he came at a time with no cars and no cell phones. No instant messaging, texting, skyping, face-timing. A LOT of Jesus' time was simply spent walking. His time was all sucked up by transportation (and you might think your commute is bad!). Hours and hours of walking and talking, or walking and simply BEING alone and silent. Walking to a mountain to pray, walking back to find his disciples in the town. If he had an inspired thought and wanted to share it with them, it had to wait until they had personal contact. He couldn't text or call or even ask Siri to remind him later.
All this to say, I am on the struggle bus always when it comes to pushing myself to be "productive" and "efficient" in everything I do, as if these were values that were lived out in the life of Jesus. Do I think Jesus was UNproductive? Not exactly, but he wasn't driven by quotas and lists of tasks. Does he want us all to be good stewards of the resources and opportunities we have? Absolutely. But, He let stuff breathe. He and His disciples had to. Again: worst time in history to do "church ministry" as we recognize it today. No mass mailings, no live-streaming of sermons, no big outreach projects that could be organized by committee months ahead of time. And yet, the outreach programs were the miracles of the fish and bread, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, all of which occurred as Jesus trusted, was obedient, faithful.
All this to say, friends, that I'm taking a figurative deep breath and relaxing my hold on some of the things on my list and on the list itself--whether it all gets done or not or in what time frame is not the end of the world. And, I'm repenting (i.e. changing my mind) about how close to godliness I hold efficiency and productivity, which are actually polite ways of talking about simple self-preservation ("I've got my list so nothing bad can happen to me now!")
He's in charge.
He's got ways of accomplishing more
than my/your list
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