Monday, August 08, 2011

Busyness -- a Virtue?

I have been thinking about this quite a bit lately. Somewhere back, we Christians bought into the cultural lie that busyness is a godly virtue. We have been driven by sayings like, "Idle hands are the devil's workshop" -- convincing us that we need to be busy all the time. It even seems that there is an informal competitiveness that exists to prove to others that "I am busier than you are."

I have come to view the recitations of the "busyholic" as boring. Do you know what I'm talking about? People who, whenever you are around them, have to give you a recitation of their dayplanners to prove how busy they are? It's as if they find validation as a human being in their busyness.

Now, I am well aware that Scripture warns against idleness and laziness. But I don't see where it exalts busyness. I actually believe Scripture would say that busyness is a sign of imbalance and lack of discipline. Martha was chided by Jesus for missing what Mary gained because Martha thought busyness was more important than sitting with Him.

As Christians, we would do well to reclaim the spiritual discipline of meditation. It is not some mystical practice owned only by Eastern religions. It is spoken of regularly in Scripture. I am amazed at how much better my perspective is when I face a day after sitting in silence in the morning and emptying my mind so that the Lord can fill it (I know, it doesn't take long for me to empty my mind). 5 minutes of this discipline has amazing benefits!

"Be still, and know that I am God." "May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer." "I will meditate on your wonders"


Anonymous said...

God knew what He was doing when He prescribed a day of rest.

Jeff said...


I believe our concept of laziness has been fueled by our concept of stockholder value - that the harder we work, the more we make and the more we make the more we get. We've applied our business practices to our spiritual lives and it's all backwards. I'm not sure laziness wouldn't be more appealing to God than our constant motion that takes us away from listening to him.