"Sorry, but I am just too busy right now."
"Can't do it. Got a lot of things on my plate."
"Are you kidding? I have a gillion things on my list that need to be done."
"Whew, what an EXHAUSTING day! My feet are killing me, I think my back is out of place, and I don't even want to think about cleaning up after supper!"
Any of those sound familiar? I was just sitting here thinking about my crazy, crazy, busy, busy schedule coming up. In fact, for the rest of this week and next, I only have 3 days that I have a "clean plate" or nothing on my agenda. Our family, for the past 3 years, has joined up with a local community choir to sing Handel's Messiah. This is lots of fun because it is a family thing. I enjoy it, but it does take a lot of time out of our schedule. Every Sunday afternoon starting on the first Sunday in November we have practices. Singing for 2 hours can really exhaust a person, so by the time we roll home at 7 pm, we are done in. For the past couple of years this really wasn't so bad. I mean, c'mon, surely we can deal with every Sunday afternoon for just a while, right? Sure! However, I also have singing on Thursday because I have joined up with a Home school choir. Don't get me wrong, I really enjoy it. My friend and I divided the songs and each of us are doing some piano accompaniment. On songs I am not playing, I am singing.
Any way, that takes up my Thursdays. Not too bad, really. I can get up, get school done in the morning, then head out for choir in the afternoon.
So, you're thinking what in the world I am talking about being busy. Two days a week being gone from home isn't much, really. However, remember me saying that for the rest of this week and next I only have 3 free days? I will break it down... ;-) Tomorrow I will be going into town with my Mama and brothers (town is 45-60 minutes from home). Wednesday my sister and I will be going to a friend's house for some good old fashioned hand quilting (not bad, eh?). Thursday I have choir. Friday (my "free" day) some rancher friends will be stopping by. Saturday we have dress rehearsal for Messiah, and then on Sunday we have performance. So, Monday and Tuesday of next week are my other free days. Wednesday the Home school choir will be singing at a senior center. Thursday is choir dress rehearsal, Friday is performance. Saturday and Sunday are the last two Messiah performances.
Well, other than losing my voice with all the singing *wink*, it shouldn't be too bad. I mean, really, it isn't THAT bad, but as I sat here thinking about my busy schedule, I started thinking about whether being so busy is good.
When we are really busy, we really miss out on the important things in life: God, family, friends, etc. I shamefully admit that I have had several mornings when I have woken up (some times a little later than I intended) and said, "Oh, no time to read my Bible this morning. I have to get out and milk the cow, do school, clean my room, etc, etc, etc..." you get the picture.
So, although busy schedules are nice because you are actually doing things, are we really doing things that need to be done? For me, I will be missing out on several days of being with my family. Now, by going to the senior center and singing at performances we will hopefully bless many people and share God's wonderful news during this beautiful season. I am not saying all busy schedules are bad, but I do think that some can get unnecessarily busy. I don't know how many times I have wasted a precious bit of time with my younger brother by refusing to do things with him using the excuse of "I'm too busy" or "I'm too tired". I have missed out on fun conversations with my other younger brother by simply telling him I am "in the middle of something and can't be bothered." I have missed out on wonderful, encouraging, relationship building conversations with my sister by being absorbed in writing letters to friends, or doing "my own thing".
All of those things I have missed out on because I am "too busy", or in simpler words, I am too selfish to give up what I want to do instead of seeing to the needs of others.
Often times we can let our busy schedules get in the way of what is most important. When that happens, we start making excuses; "I can't read my Bible THIS Morning because I am too busy, tired, etc." "Oh, I will just have to wait and read my Bible another morning because THIS morning is too hectic." "I guess I can read it later..." ("later" rolls around and the Bible still hasn't been read) All of those excuses start coming out until we could eventually just say phooey to it all. That is when Satan starts putting his whole foot in the door. When we make the excuses he is just getting his toe in. When we start throwing it away on jobs, friends, and non-important things, he starts creeping into our hearts. I know that when I have gone several days without reading God's Word, I tend to start falling back into my old selfish thought. I start putting myself before others and forget Who I am serving.
However! "Through the Lord's Mercies we are not consumed because His compassion fail not. They are new EVERY morning. Great is Your faithfulness. 'The Lord is my portion,' says my soul, 'Therefore I hope in Him!' The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul who seeks Him." Lamentations 3:22-25