Refusing to be Busy: A Call to LESS
Have you ever had an “out-of-body” experience? I did a few years ago, and it caused me to examine my life in a new way. One morning as I was passing by some friends at church, we began to engage in the familiar small-talk exchange. “How have you been?” After a brief sigh, I replied “Busy.” I paused. It was as if I was watching myself in slow-motion; from the moment that tiny word left my mouth, I wanted to somehow snatch it out of mid-air. Busy? Is that who I am!? Is being busy how I define myself and describe my life?
The thing is, I don’t want to be busy. I want to be joyful, content, peaceful, purposeful, vibrant, (maybe even rested!). I stumbled upon some blogs on minimalism/simplicity and my soul resonated with the need to SIMPLIFY. And I think if we’re honest, most of us could use some simplifying.
What might a biblical approach to simplicity look like? The first step has to be examining and meditating on our PURPOSE. As Christians, we know we are called to love God with all our hearts, love our neighbor as ourselves, and be a part of God’s ministry of reconciliation to all people. What does that look like in your life? What specific ways has God gifted you? Where has he placed you to live out this mission? What are your passions?
The next step is to throw off everything that distracts us from that purpose. Hebrews 12 says “… let us throw off everything that hinders… and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus…” Throw off hindrances….simplify. It's easy for us to wish there were more hours in the day- to just think time is the issue. But we can choose to make the most of every day and opportunity. So, what are some common things that steal our time and distract us from our purpose? We can start by choosing LESS….
- Less Stuff
How much time do we spend purchasing and maintaining STUFF? How much more time and money would we have to devote to things that really matter if we lived with less? (Luke 16:13, Matthew 6:19-21)
- Less TV and Social Media
These can be great tools when used in moderation. But when we look back at the end of our lives, will we wish we spent those hours differently? An hour spent on Netflix or Facebook could mean a missed opportunity to connect face-to-face with someone. We need true community. (1 Corinthians 6:12, Colossians 3:15-16)
- Less Negative Thoughts
Stress, shame, self-doubt, envy, unforgiveness, bitterness, passing judgement, to name a few. Instead of wasting time and mental energy on negativity, gaze on God and his beauty, and we will begin to see people (including ourselves!) how He sees them. (Philippians 4:8, 1 Peter 2:1)
- Less Talk
What if we eliminated useless words and only said what was true, necessary, or edifying? (Matthew 5:37, Ephesians 4:29)
This is just a starting place; what other ways can we gain more by choosing less? I’d love to hear your feedback!
BIO: Taylor is the wife of Micah White, Groups Pastor at Council Road Baptist Church, and mother to Navy and Foster. She works as a PA in Oklahoma City, and is also passionate about serving and edifying the Church. She most enjoys time with her family, but can also be found reading, teaching, making music, hand-lettering, and hosting gatherings. She loves a friendly debate and a good laugh.