We have survived another summer and it’s about time for school to start again. We have had our trips to the beach—our vacations full of more activities than our normal lives around here. We have enjoyed time with family, perhaps a reunion or two, and the driving back-and-forth to camps of all sorts. Our gardens are fitting into their jars and our yards are bursting, thanks to all of the rain. In a very short time, we will be driving to football games, going through corn mazes and trying to find the scariest experiences our kids can handle. Parents will be on homework duty again, trying to figure out why we were never taught these methods in our educational upbringing. Grandma is looking forward to the holidays, grandpa is looking forward to hunting season, and life rolls on in an endless routine of activities. Each season brings with it work to do, happenings to attend, people to visit, good times to be shared.
If my life was a simple routine then that would be one thing, but often I find myself flirting with complete chaos. Recently, I visited my uncle and he has a habit of getting up early every morning to pull weeds from his garden. So each day I was visiting, my uncle would be out in his garden pulling the few weeds that had sprung up overnight. When I returned home, the contrast of my garden and my lack of discipline could not have been more obvious. In my garden, weeds were everywhere…choking out the cucumbers, growing up through the pepper plants, blocking the sun from hitting the okra plants. I took my string trimmer in there and started going to town. And why? Because I needed to get the weeds to a manageable height so that I might have a chance at pulling them. The garden was utter chaos, and my lack of tending it resulted in my having to overwork to get it back to a manageable state…sometimes our lives can get untended and overgrown causing more work and anxiety than we really want to have.
I’m busy. Sometimes I feel more like a kid taxi driver than a minister, and at times I’m pretty sure I get so caught up in the routine of life activities, that it begins to choke out all of the good stuff life has to offer—joy, peace, love, hope—and in those moments I realize that my lack of daily attention to the things that matter create a chaos that I have to work so hard to overcome. For me, the local church is my foundation, my anchor in the chaos, the community of faith helps me think through my priorities, helps me keep the good stuff at the center of my life, and helps me navigate the hectic routines with purpose. I pray you have something that keeps you anchored reminding you of the important things. If this is lacking in your life, then please consider the importance of a community of faith.
All of this to say, there isn’t one of us who are perfect at this life thing…we get caught up in so much. Many of us suffer from hurts, habits, and hang-ups that keep us trapped in a never-ending routine of nothing but “weeds.” Some of us are addicted. Some of us are at the end of our rope. And there, in the midst of it all is the quiet presence of the Living God. God is waiting to be discovered anew in our lives. God wants our seasons, struggles, and situations brought before Him. When our lives are utter chaos, when our lack of tending our souls has resulted in all levels of depletion, God can restore us back to our intended purpose.
You local church is not interested in being another thing on your schedule, another activity to attend, another place to drop off your kids, or another boring religious ritual to endure. Jesus claimed that He has come to give life, and to give it to the fullest. There is something more to life than vacations and trips, beaches and forests, sports and activities. All of these things are great, but they are all gifts provided by God who wants us to live in gratitude for each and every season we are given on this earth. So, in the routine and craziness of our busy world, do we have time for God? Can we make time for God?
Know that God loves you so much that Jesus Christ, the son of God, was sent to repair the broken relationship between God and humanity. This involved a cross, but it also involved a resurrection from the dead and a reunion of Father and Son that we believe will one day include us. To this end we hope, and remain faithful to God. Please consider the tending of your soul, and know that for anyone who wants to have a relationship with God, God has already made the first move! Everything we do is in response to God…so, what’s your response?
I want to share thoughts, insights, and scriptures that lead us in the direction of Christ.