“If the Devil can’t make you bad, he’ll make you busy!”
That’s what a friend of mine wrote me on the day of my grad school graduation. I’m not sure he gave it much thought, but for me, it was prophetic. No, I’m not the one who is have an adulterous affair or embezzle money. But, my struggle and many of the people I know, is that we get just too busy with life. In fact, I’d suggest that one of the biggest problems in the world is this breathless pace in which we live.
The great “theologian” Vince Lombardi, once the coach of the Green Bay Packers who said, “Fatigue makes cowards of us all.” I know this from experience. I quickly become a lousy husband, father, and man when I’m fatigued.
Have you ever seen the road sign, “Speed Kills”?
Of course, it’s referring to driving too fast. But, I’m convinced there are also awful consequences of living a constantly exhausting life.
5 Symptoms of an Overcrowded Life:
- Loss of rhythm– I’m not talking about dance moves (or I’d be in big trouble!). I’m talking about the daily and healthy rhythms of life. Do you go to bed at a regular hour? Are you making healthy choices an occasional thing or your routine? Do you continually connect on a deeper level in your relationships?
- Loss of spiritual focus– With the constantly busy life and fast pace, one of the first things to go is any kind of deeper spiritual connection. We are too busy to set aside any personal time with God.
- Loss of health– Sometimes we can get sick because we’re so tired. Our bodies need rest. Don’t let your pace of life cause you to be more susceptible to sickness.
- Stress and at-risk behaviors– With an overcrowded life there is too much stress that builds up. When we are stressed, we don’t handle our primary relationships well. Frankly, fatigue makes anyone more vulnerable to sin.
- Overcommitted and under connected– Don’t get so busy that you miss out on the deep connections you can make in your life. Be intentional about the time you allocate to build and nurture important relationships with family, friends, and God.
So, what’s the answer?
One word: REST.
The word “rest” in the Hebrew language is Sabbath.
Here is what the Old Testament says, “It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever; for in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day, He rested and was refreshed” (Exodus 31:17).
The word refreshed can also mean to exhale. He took a breath. We are all in deep need of Sabbath on a regular basis. Unfortunately, when people think of the word Sabbath, they make it to be legalistic. But, it really is just a simple way of saying our bodies need rest, our spirits need rest.
4 Ingredients to Sabbath Lifestyle:
- Rest– Do you take breaks? Maybe try resting from social media one day a week.
- Refresh– What do you recharge and rejuvenate your connections each week? It doesn’t have to be a big deal, but it does need to be intentional.
- Restore – Relationships can bend and even break under the busyness of life. What do you do proactively to make sure that on a regular basis you are practicing the art of restoration in your relationships?
- Recreation– What do you that’s fun on a weekly basis? Intentional fun times on at least a weekly basis will do a lot for you.