The Time Thief
Some of you may be wondering where I got the idea for the image this time. A hamster running in a wheel? Really? I know it’s funny right? Probably wondering seriously where I’m going with all of this.
What I’ve learned about these little furry guys is they actually adore these wheels. They’re born to run and they enjoy it – plain and simple. However, without knowing this information about the hamsters, I’d be left to assume this small animal is working overtime. He’s running in place but no matter how fast-paced he goes he doesn’t appear to be making very much progress. I know this is not the case, but from the outward appearance this is the impression I get seeing them running.
I remember I had one as a pet…15 years or so ago and I recall watching him while he ran in his wheel. He’d run and run and run and I remember thinking, “He’s been running in this wheel (full speed) seems like forever and have seemingly gotten no further ahead than when he started.” That’s sort of how I’ve viewed myself recently. At least in the spiritual and emotional sense.
I recall just this past 4th of July, My husband and I took our children over to see the fireworks. We attempted to watch the fireworks but got rained out. My husband decided we’d stay for a bit despite the rain. Fortunately, we had umbrellas and as much as I dreaded it at first (staying out in the rain like that), I was blessed with the opportunity to vent to a friend who joined us to see the fireworks. I mean really vent and venting is something that I don’t make a habit of doing very often. Nevertheless, I found myself pouring out to my friend concerning different issues, but one area in particular was just feeling overwhelmed…in a not so good way and feeling frustrated. Just being overwhelmed with everything from being a wife to being a mom. To working a full time job. And working hard to complete my first book (all the final edits, the book cover, the book trailer production, and so on).
I’ve been doing my best to use the time I have (in a given day) to make sure everything that needs to get done…gets done. And I’ve accomplished quite a bit. Have met many of my goals. All the while, I’ve realized that I haven’t been making any real time for God or my Family. Life’s gotten in the way…so to the point where I’ve been physically drained and have lost connection with what should matter the most. Which brings me to the whole point of this new blog post and the subject I feel God wants me to address next: The Time Thief.
As I started working on the draft for this blog post, it dawned on me what’s been happening to me and probably millions of other people around the world. It hit me that I’ve been so busy with life, that I’ve been allowing satan to steal my time. And in the most subtle way: All for good causes.
My life for the past two years since I’ve become determined to push myself to get my book published has consisted of countless days and nights that go something like this: Get up to get ready for work. Usually, bone tired from being up writing half the night. Drive to work. Work all day. Come home from work, super exhausted. Spend time with my husband and the kids long enough to eat dinner. Chat with them for a bit. Get everything all cleaned up. Get the kids ready for bed. And then once everyone is settled, I am back to work. Working on the novel. Or working on our finances. Working. Working. Working. Constantly. Not resting. Not exercising or eating nutritious meals (at least not until recently). Nothing.
And don’t get me wrong, my husband has been EVERYTHING and MORE to me, but when you have both parents in a household working. And everyone’s constantly busy. At what point does quality time get spent as a family? At what point, as a Christian, do you go out and share the news about Jesus with others to help change lives? These are questions I’ve recently had to ask myself. You know it’s bad when your own child complains, “Mommy, can’t we just have a day where you can stay home and we can just hang out? Maybe watch a movie as a family. Anything. Just no work, PLEASE. No working on your new novel. I know it’s important, but can we just spend time for a little a while? No appointments? No one else visiting? No obligations. Nothing.” My son’s plea brought tears to my eyes. And I promised him “yes” we would work on spending more quality time together as a family. I think this recent plea from my child is what really hit home for me and made me realize, “I’ve got to regain focus here and get back to what matters most.”
How in the world is it that I’ve become too busy for my own children? Is even the book worth me sacrificing precious moments with my family that we can never relive again? Besides, the book will get done. In God’s timing. It’ll get published.
Here’s my point:
It’s so easy to get caught up in the masses. I think society has a lot to do with this new way of thinking. Almost as if it’s a social norm of some sort. The enemy would have you to think, “I’ve got it in me. And it’s all for a good cause right? I can take on the additional social commitments. I can cram just one more thing into my day to get done. That’s what it’s all about right? Being driven, right?” When the truth is the absolute opposite is the case. It’s like the image I have of me running in the Hamster Wheel, accomplishing so many tasks, remaining busy, but still not experiencing happiness or inner joy and peace. Still not getting anywhere towards that inner peace. Has anyone else ever felt this before?
The Bible says in John 4: 14 - New International Version (NIV) – But whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.
I translate this to mean Jesus is saying that He can fulfill desires in us that nothing or no one else can. That said, I could publish 50 novels and still not have that deep inner peace and contentment I think we all long for as human beings.
Am I saying it is wrong to be productive? ABSOLUTELY NOT. There will be times when you have to get things done. What I would encourage, however, is that you try to find healthy balance and know when to turn off.
John 10:10 (NIV) - The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
In doing my research on scriptures and drafting my initial notes for this blog, I stumbled across an article (seems to be more of a poem really) and in closing I want to share it with you. Some of you may already be familiar with it.
Disclaimer: I don’t have any personal proof of a conversation like the one you’ll find in the below article, but something tells me when it comes to the enemy, he works very similarly to what you will read. His schemes are all designed to make us so distracted that we have hardly any time for God...the Vital Source that’s needed daily to sustain us. Additionally, the enemy tries hard to make us so burned out, that we don’t have time for our own families either.
So just think for a second, what in the world could be more important than God and Family? I sure hope you enjoy reading this blog post as much as I have enjoyed writing it. It took several weeks on this one for me to complete and it really HIT HOME. God Bless.
The below article is not my own work, so I am giving proper credit as follows:
SATAN'S MEETING: (Read even (especially) if you're busy). (n.d.). Retrieved from: http://jim-n-sherry.0catch.com/satansmeeting.htm.
SATAN'S MEETING: (Read even (especially) if you're busy)
Satan called a worldwide convention of demons.
In his opening address he said,
"We can't keep Christians from going to church."
"We can't keep them from reading their Bibles and knowing the truth."
"We can't even keep them from forming an intimate
relationship with their savior."
"Once they gain that connection with Jesus, our power over them is broken."
"So let them go to their churches; let them have their covered dish
dinners, BUT steal their time, so they don't have time to develop a
relationship with Jesus Christ.”
"This is what I want you to do," said the devil:
"Distract them from gaining hold of their Savior and maintaining that vital connection throughout their day!"
"How shall we do this?" his demons shouted.
"Keep them busy in the non-essentials of life and invent innumerable schemes to occupy their minds," he answered.
"Tempt them to spend, spend, spend, and borrow, borrow, borrow."
"Persuade the wives to go to work for long hours and the husbands to work 6-7 days each week, 10-12 hours a day, so they can afford their empty lifestyles."
"Keep them from spending time with their children."
"As their families fragment, soon, their homes will offer no escape from the pressures of work!"
"Over-stimulate their minds so that they cannot hear that still, small voice."
"Entice them to play the radio or cassette player whenever they drive." To keep the TV, VCR, CDs and their PCs going constantly in their home and see to it that every store and restaurant in the world plays non-biblical music constantly."
"This will jam their minds and break that union with Christ."
"Fill the coffee tables with magazines and newspapers."
"Pound their minds with the news 24 hours a day."
"Invade their driving moments with billboards."
"Flood their mailboxes with junk mail, mail order catalogs, sweepstakes, and every kind of newsletter and promotional offering free products, services and false hopes.”
"Keep skinny, beautiful models on the magazines and TV so their husbands will believe that outward beauty is what's important, and they'll become dissatisfied with their wives.”
"Keep the wives too tired to love their husbands at night."
"Give them headaches too!”
"If they don't give their husbands the love they need, they will begin to look elsewhere."
"That will fragment their families quickly!"
"Give them Santa Claus to distract them from teaching their children the real meaning of Christmas."
"Give them an Easter bunny so they won't talk about his resurrection and power over sin and death."
"Even in their recreation, let them be excessive."
"Have them return from their recreation exhausted."
"Keep them too busy to go out in nature and reflect on God's creation. Send them to amusement parks, sporting events, plays, concerts, and movies instead."
"Keep them busy, busy, busy!"
"And when they meet for spiritual fellowship, involve them in gossip and small talk so that they leave with troubled consciences."
"Crowd their lives with so many good causes they have no time to seek power from Jesus."
"Soon they will be working in their own strength, sacrificing their health and family for the good of the cause."
"It will work!"
"It will work!"
It was quite a plan!
The demons went eagerly to their assignments causing Christians everywhere to get busier and more rushed, going here and there.
Having little time for their God or their families.
Having no time to tell others about the power of Jesus to change lives.
I guess the question is, has the devil been successful in his schemes?
You be the judge!!!!!
Does "BUSY" mean: B-eing U-nder S-atan's Y-oke?
Please pass this on, if you aren't too BUSY!
We can overcome the B.U.S.Y.
Be an overcomer! Seek the Lord and He shall be found.