Hebrews 10:23-25-Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. (NIV)
All of my life I have heard these verses used as a reminder that we need to worship together regularly and I believe that is right! This morning, though, God used them to remind me of so much more!
We live in a fast-paced world, where most people feel an obligation to be busy. So often, we hear friends (or even our own voice) almost bragging about how busy we are, though our words are couched in tones of complaint. Are we really so ridiculous that we think it is a badge of honor to be overextended and overwhelmed?
We are often in activities that we sense aren’t the best choice. Perhaps we override our own objections which are telling us that this kind of busyness is keeping our family from truly connecting. We know that our hustle and bustle is doing less for their character than what sports coaches and other parents are proclaiming. There is little time to, “Be still and know that I am God.” Mostly, this schedule makes us wonder where God could possibly be!
Of course, we all know that electronics take up any remaining time that family would normally have to bond. The important battle over getting loved ones to lay down the obsession of our culture is too strong…too hard. It’s one extra battle we so often don’t feel we can “pick” when every member of the family is already stretched to the maximum and battle weary.
So with all of our busyness I wonder if we are investing in the lives of those closest to us in a way that encourages godly character. Shouldn’t part of our investment in our children be our expectation that they participate with us as we faithfully encourage friends, neighbors and extended family? Or has our mantra become,“I don’t have time for this!”
What of hospitality? Do we understand the importance of bringing someone into our home for a meal rather than meeting them in a restaurant filled with noise and distractions? Have we understood that to invite someone to sit at our table is less about the food than it is about honoring and nourishing their parched spirit in ways nothing else can? Hospitality is healing. When was the last time my schedule (or my not-so-neat house) didn’t stand in the way of making a significant difference?
This God-ordained life cannot be lived unless we are very intentional in laying out a schedule that is very different from that of our culture. God wants to order our days. He can’t and he won’t do that unless we make the choice to let Him.