I’ve noticed a trend lately that when someone asks, “How are you?” the answer I hear more than any other is, “Oh, I’m so busy!” Right? I’m guilty as well. I think we all are probably. We always seem to be so busy, or maybe we always want to seem so busy. I read a quote recently from the New York Timesthat really hit it on the head.
“Busyness serves as a kind of hedge against emptiness; obviously your life cannot possibly be silly or trivial or meaningless if you are so busy, completely booked, in demand every hour of the day…. [We’re] busy because of [our] own ambition or drive or anxiety, because [we’re] addicted to busyness and dread what [we] might have to face in its absence.”
DANG! Okay, so I might have just read this little quote the other day, but the original article was published in June of 2012… That means we didn’t grab ahold of this concept back then. This is still something we struggle with all the time, and it may even be worse now than it was then. I see social media posts about it, hear about it from friends, family, and even strangers, and see it promoted on TV and movies. We are a people who need to be doing something all the time. We have forgotten… or maybe we never really had it down… how to just be.
I have been finding in the Scriptures that the Lord really wants us to understand this concept of ‘just being’.
“Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” –Psalm 46:10
“The Lord will fight for you while you keep still.” –Exodus 14:14
“The Lord is in His holy temple. All the earth be quite in His presence.”–Habakkuk 2:20
Those are just a few! God wants us to BE STILL before Him and see how amazing He is. He is the Great I AM, our Mighty Deliverer, and our Strong Tower. Let Him be who He is! Be still, be quiet and just look at HIM. I know a lot of people are always saying, ‘we were made for______’ whatever, fill in the blank. We were made to be with God. That’s it. We were made to commune with Him, to just be with Him & bring Him more glory. As we are with Him & as we bring Him glory, we will naturally show others who He is and show them His glory. Everything in our lives should flow from the place of INTIMACY with the Lord.
You can see Jesus all throughout the Gospels pulling Himself away to be with the Lord, to pray & hear from His Father. If the SON OF GOD had to do this, how much more do we need to pull away and get alone with our Father? Seriously, are we saying that we are holier than Jesus? Are we saying that we know more than He did? Of course we would never actually say those things, but that is what we are screaming through the way we live our lives. We are looking at the face of God and saying, ‘I’m too busy for you, and I have it all under control here, so I don’t need to be with you’. How completely absurd?! We are nothing outside of Him. We have nothing outside of Him. He is the creator of the universe…. The whole of creation shouts His praise! Are we are so arrogant?!
Church, we should be on our faces every morning before Him asking for more of Him, asking for His strength, His wisdom, His help. This is how we should live our lives. Again, we look at Jesus… He constantly walked away from crowds, from His disciples, from His friends to get alone with His Father.
“So Jesus explained, I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does.”-John 5:19
Jesus, THE SON OF GOD, only did what He saw the Father do. Now, I’m not sure if you understand this… Jesus, He was the Son of God. The Bible tells us that everything was created for him and through Him. EVERYTHING was created FOR HIM and THROUGH HIM… Okay. Wow, just wow.
Excuse me while I just take a sidebar here…
Most times we take Jesus for granted I think. Just knowing that He died on the Cross for me, He’s always with me, and He loves me. And then we just go on with life. This has to change! The Son of God, whom all things were created for and though, was beaten, shamed, and hung on a cross (the worst kind of death) not so you could feel good about going to Heaven one day, to go to church most Sundays, maybe even serve somewhere in church, tithe 10%, and try to be a really nice and good person. That is not what He died for! And Beloved, we need to WAKE UP and realize that Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world, died so that we could BE WITH HIM. He died so that we could be restored to Him. He died so that we could lay our lives down and find His life, where we are truly hidden! Amen?!
“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore, God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name”–Philippians 2:5-9
Now that I got that off my chest we can get back to it. So, you know how we are so busy trying to get ahead in the world, trying to provide, and do good? Well, in God’s Kingdom (the upside down Kingdom) He says that He will prosper you; He will exalt you, as you humble yourself.
“Therefore, humble yourselves under the Mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time.” -1Peter5:6
“Blessed are the poor in Spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.” –Matthew 5:3-10
And of course there are so many more that lead us to humility instead of ‘trying to get ahead’. This is such a countercultural message, humble yourself and you’ll be exalted. In the world it’s always, look out for yourself because nobody else will. What we constantly see in the world is take, take, take, take. And Jesus is calling us to give, give, give, give. Give your time, your money, yourself. Lay down your life and you will find His. Let me tell you, that is one heck of a trade! We lay down our small, tiny nothing life and we get the King of the universe in exchange?! He is so much better, so much more than we can ever know.
So church, still yourself. Lay down the illusion that you have it all under control, that your business and try-hard lifestyle will get you anywhere but defeated and beat into the ground, lay it down and pick Him up. Pick up the One who is worthy, the One who will never fail, the One who never runs out of steam, the One who always loves, who is always compassionate. He wants to trade you. Take Him up on that offer and don’t let go. And please, don’t have a heart change for a day or a week, but contend for it always. Never let go of His life, but lay yours down every day.