How often do you hear or use the statement, “Sorry, I’m too busy”? There are times when it is a legitimate reason to say, “No.” But often it is a superficial excuse. It would be more honest to admit that we have other priorities for our time. So, how do we determine our priorities and organize our schedules? Jesus had a simple plan; He evaluated everything according to God’s will.
I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner.
I can do nothing on My own initiative. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is just, because I do not seek My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. (John 5:19, 30)
Jesus’ way is a standard for us to aim at. It begins with the admission that anything we do of ourselves amounts to nothing. Only God’s will has lasting value. Jesus’ activities flowed from watching His Father at work and listening to His voice.
“Isn’t that rather idealistic?” you might ask. “What about my business, my screaming children, my sick mother, the tree that just crashed through the neighbor’s roof? Do I have to pray before I go to work and clear up the messes?”
Of course you don’t. Work and family are part of God’s will for most of us; they fit His purposes too. He knows there will be seasons when our time is stretched thin by unusual demands like illness, crises, or a traffic jam on the freeway; He uses us there too. God gave us brains and bodies that need refreshment and relaxation, so movie nights and workouts have their place. However, if, before the day’s demands begin, we set aside time for the Father to show us what He is doing and how we can live in top form to serve His purposes (link to reading the Bible), then we are less likely to be “too busy” for His work. Life will be focused already. Then, if we need to say “No,” we can do so with a more honest, “I believe God has other priorities for me.”
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