“Overcrowded Lives”

By Chris Lopez

In Luke 8: 14- “ And the ones that fell among thorns  are those who, when they heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity.”

Matthew 13: 22- “ Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful.”

1 Kings 20: 38-40  A prophet disguised himself and waited for the King to pass by. When the King passed by, the prophet related a story concerning an individual who was given a task to guard this individual and if he is missing then the guard would killed or pay a hefty sum of money. This servant was busy here and there, he was gone. 

Many of us can relate to this individual who was busy here and there and being so preoccupied with our various task at hand that we drift away or lose sight of our main objective.  Luke 10:41-42 relates an important incident in regards to Martha and Mary. Jesus answered and said to her, “ Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things.” “ But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away.” We can relate to Martha where we become so busy with our routine that the important things in life get crowded out.

over commitment is the tendency to commit to many activities and to many concerns. It is a dangerous habit. This habit plagues us today and leads us to overcrowded lives which affects our spiritual vitality and effectiveness. We don’t have time for daily bible reading, daily prayers, we don’t have time for involvement. We all struggle with overcrowded schedules which chokes the word and stunts our spiritual progress. 

Over crowdedness takes effect when we are influenced and have an attraction towards materialism and pleasure. We spent an exorbitant amount time and effort building a carrier, making money, and wanting more stuff. We spend a great amount of our time and money in entertainment and hobbies, whether television, sports and travelling.  We don’t see it as a major problem and diminish it’s seriousness by considering this to be a temporary phase that will vanish away sometime in the future. There is nothing more permanent than a temporary situation. In our lives we are moving from one set of essentials to another thus we face an unbroken chain of temporary over committed commitments on our part. 

Over crowdedness robs us of critical opportunities we might not get back. As parents we are busy during the formative years of our children. Over commitment is the number one killer in marriage. We do not have time for our loved ones and if we are not careful these things can choke our lives to the point we become unfruitful. It is time for us to wake up. Romans 13: 11,12 And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake from sleep; for now salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. 

Our inability to say no is a sign of an addiction. We are in a society that offers us a lot of choices. Many of us are like the kid in the candy shop that can’t make up his mind because he wants it all. We become junkies who want it all, that is covetousness. We have a hard time saying no. We over indulge we lack rather than mastering our activities we let our activities master us. We make the false assumptions that, “ We have the right to do everything we want to do.” “ We can find a way to do everything we want to do without our priorities suffering.” “ If there is a problem then we need to reschedule and manage our time more efficiently and effectively.” The word sacrifice is not in our vocabulary. We are not willing to make sacrifices that will benefit our physical and spiritual lives. Our time is limited we cannot do everything that we fancy. We must be willing to forego certain opportunities in order to achieve and accomplish spiritual goals.

We can become so busy that we give God the left oversof our time, effort and resources or we serve the Lord when we have nothing else to do. How we use our time and resources demonstrates our priority, it depicts our love for God. We must seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness…Matthew 6:33. We must be good and faithful stewards of what God has entrusted to us, our lives, time, health, money, family. Everything we have belongs to Him and one day we will have to give an account Hebrews 9:27

Over crowdedness keeps us preoccupied distracted from God’s purposes that are to be accomplished in our lives. It robs us of our spiritual vitality. We become spiritually ineffective thus becoming ,”A jack of all trade and a master of none.” We need time to develop our strength, we need time for personal rejuvenation and time to think, plan and work with wisdom. We can be weary in doing good. We can run on empty. Let us consider Ecclesiastes 5: 1-7. Don’t be rash in making commitment, consider and think carefully before making a commitment, do not make too many commitments. 

Families are adversely affected by our busy schedule. Our children have become miniature adults with overcrowded schedule. We have no time for our children and eventually they will have no time for us as we are training to be busy or more busy than us.

Deuteronomy 6: 4-9 Moses told the children of Israel to be committed to God and then spend time to nurture their children with diligent effort. Husbands and wives must spent time nurturing each other spiritually. 

Jesus is our example, Jesus was extremely busy always on the go preaching, teaching, healing the sick yet, He took time to pray, although everyone was looking for Him ( Mark 1 :35)  We have another example in where He withdrew often into the wilderness and prayed (Luke 5:16) Jesus prayed all night before selecting His disciples( Luke 6:12)

Some good advice and possible solutions.

Lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. (1Timothy2:2)

Reading and meditation.  ( 1Timothy 4: 13-15)

Do not be double minded or doubtful.  ( James 1: 6,7)

Be wise in redeeming the time and understand God’s will ( Ephesians 5: 15-17)