I rush everywhere I go. It starts first thing in the morning, after I pry myself from bed. I speed through my shower, rush to get lunches packed, and try to slip in breakfast before heading to the bus stop with wet hair. Then it's rush back to the house, finish getting ready and head to work.
There isn't a chance that I started my morning with devotions. I obviously have chosen to sleep longer than start my day with devotions. I used to try to do devotions in the evening after the kids were in bed but then I found myself trying to speed read or multitask read and listen to the tv. Yet again, I chose to put something else above devotions. It was so easy for me to go through my day without reading from my bible. Finally, I've found my best time and place for devotions--the bus stop. With such a wide swing between the times my girls can get home from the bus, I have quiet time by myself to read and actually contemplate the words.
Devotions aren't the only area where we can choose to put ourselves above God and his plan for our lives. How many times do we CHOOSE to ignore our opportunities? How many times have we seen a note in the bulletin or listened to someone ask for help without considering ourselves as the solution? We are experts in the area of excuses!
That is not my gift.
Someone else will do that.
I don't have time.
I don't have money.
I don't want to work with them.
I'm not good enough.
I didn't go to school for that.
My kids have a practice, a game, a bad attitude.
What if we were honest about our excuses?
I don't want to be bothered right now.
I'll just write a check.
I think I can find something more fun to do.
I want to spend money on myself, my fun, my family, me, me, me.
If someone else will do the work I'm not going to worry.
I'm too scared to even try.
My kids, spouse, friends... are more important to me.
I'm not willing to put God above the rest of my life.
WHAT IF God had his own list of excuses and took a break from the job of omnipotent, loving Father? At those times when we are low and broken, would we appreciate a busy signal or voicemail from God? What if God just really wanted to drown out our whining by cranking the heavenly chorus? Can you imagine God blowing off your most important decision because Jesus had a soccer game? Luckily, God doesn't require all of our minutes, he asks for our willingness to be available when we can make a difference.
Ephesians 2:10 "For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."
I am my own stumbling block! I have to choose every day to set aside time for God. Praying and bible study don't come natural to me and slip away easily. Others struggle with prioritizing work and family commitments with church. Some are just pew jockeys who choose not to engage.
No matter the struggle, we must choose what we will give up for God--extra sleep, mindless tv, our checkbook, our pride, a child's practice or game, our free time. If we choose to live for ourselves, we choose to miss the target chosen for us.