Monday, June 16, 2008

Time to Sharpen my Knife

Working for a church is at times like a grade B horror movie.  If you’re not careful, you will soon be absorbed into the organism.  I have watched as my free time has gradually disappeared, being replaced by more church-related activities.  I have also watched as more church leaders (at all levels) have been affected by the same family problems that I saw while I was in private practice as an attorney.  I have seen divorces caused by too much time at work.  I have seen children rebel because they feel like they are competing against the church, and losing.

 With today’s technology blurring the line between the office and the home, we can be reached just about anywhere, whether by telephone, text, or email.  As much as I hate when it happens to me, recently, I have found myself doing that to my team.  I need to stop.  There is a reason why God demanded a day of rest.  We all need a time to unplug, unwind, and just do nothing “productive.”

 The apostles returned to Jesus and told him all that they had done and taught.  And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. Mark 6:30-32 (ESV)

 Previously, I worked a job that required the use of sharp knives.  At times, I would be so busy working, that, in my mind, I did not have the time to sharpen the knife.  It got to the point where my boss would force me to stop and sharpen it.  Interestingly, I found that when I cut with a sharp knife, I more than made up the time I had spent sharpening it.  Furthermore, although it might be counterintuitive, it was actually safer to cut with a sharp knife.  When the knife was sharp, it went where I wanted it to go and I did not have to fight it or strain against it to get it there.  

 The same has to apply to our life.  If all we ever do is stay absorbed in our work, we will grow less effective over time.  In fact, we will not only hurt the work of our ministry, we may also hurt the ones we love.  Work can wait.  We need that time to come away and rest, time to sharpen our knives.

1 comment:

Anthony Bass said...

is your knife still sharp?