27 April 2015

I Don't Have The Time

"I'm sorry, but I simply don’t have the time.”

How often have you heard this? It's used as an excuse throughout the country at the moment, as political parties tap on our doors asking for our support in the forthcoming elections. You hear it in the streets as you're approached by assertive charity collectors asking you to sign their forms... And when you've been the recipient of cold-calling, as a way of ending a less-than-productive phone call...

But, do we make the same excuses to God? 

You see, this week I came across the following quotation from Professor Bruce Hindmarsh on a website:
"Busyness is moral laziness [because it is often a statement of our self-importance and our excuse to be inattentive to people] ... But God has given us just enough time to do what we need to do moment by moment to respond to him. And his grace is there; it is eternally present. Every moment is a sacrament where time touches eternity and there is exactly enough time to do what God has called us to do."
Sure, I am aware that time is finite. We all get the same - 24 hours in every day. it's how we use it that can make all of the difference. Because everyone finds different ways to fill their day - working, reading, playing games, watching TV, doing the crossword. And so on. 

And yet I still keep coming back to Martha and Mary, and to the events recorded in Luke 10:38-42. What we do is a matter of personal choice.

So why do some of us choose to be busy? Are we doing this because we like to brag, to show people how important we are? Because, surely, that's got to be wrong!

However, the sort of 'busyness' that the professor also talks about here is a way of avoiding a harder, more costly choice. A convenient opt-out - a way to avoid getting involved in something far more difficult. "Sorry, although I'd love to help out, but I just can't spare the time..." It's a way of saying "the things I choose to do are more important that yours."

Thus, an overflowing schedule may simply be a shield protecting you from the inconvenient, time-consuming needs of others.

And if God always gives us enough time to do what He calls us to do - perhaps there are one or two others things on your busy agenda that you'll have to give up, if you do hear His call. 

Your choice.

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