My favorite idol is busyness. Allow me to explain.
It’s not that I like being busy. It’s that I have built my life around it. Maybe you have, too.
You might believe that God has called you to pastoral ministry. I certainly do.
You might also believe that he has gifted you for that calling. It could be gifts of teaching, pastoring, evangelism, faith, leadership, etc. I certainly believe that as well.
You might even believe that God has given you the physical and mental fortitude for the rigors of serving in the local church. I, too, believe that.
Like me, you have probably preached a sermon that went something like, “God’s work done God’s way will never lack for God’s resources.”
Here’s where it gets uncomfortable. If I believe God has called me, gifted me, and strengthened me to accomplish his purposes, and that he provides the resources for his work to be done, then why hasn’t he given me enough time to get everything done?
Actually, He has. The problem for me is that I’m bowing at the idol of busyness. I’m scurrying around the temple of to-dos. I’m spending my time on things that may have nothing to do with my calling. Why would I do that? Why would any of us do that?
Could it be that we long for the validation that comes from accepting mission assignments from others? Don’t get me wrong. I learn much from listening to others around me. But when their ideas crowd out God’s mission because there are only so many hours in the day, then I’ve put something else in God’s place.
What if every day started with a review of God’s mission? What if every encounter with someone wanting to add something to my calendar was filtered thru God’s first mission for me? What if all those overwhelming to-do lists were subject to the scrutiny of the Spirit’s real calling on our lives? What if some of the things on my plate or yours never belonged there in the first place?
Calvin called the human heart an idol-factory. And while he didn’t really mean it this way, I’ve come to realize that my favorite idol of busyness just keeps rising from the ashes of the factory floor. It needs to be demolished again and again. The mission is simply too important for anything less radical.
What’s your favorite idol?