I made a promise to God yesterday.
I said, “God, I will read the Bible for one hour today, I promise in the name of Jesus.” As soon as that came out of my mouth I knew that I had just told an untruth, an untruth that would haunt me for the rest of the week.
That day I made my promise to God, I had a lot to do. 1) Go to the grocery store 2) wash my comforter at the laundromat 3) make some potatoes for a barbeque I was having later 4) and of course, take a nap because I was so tired from waking up at 6:45 a.m. to get ready to go to church. My list ended there. No number 5) read the Bible. But really, this should have been at the top. 1) Read the Bible 2) pray 3) commune with God 4) pray again. Why was I wasting time? Why was I putting God last or not even on my list? I can easily say it’s because I’m human. I can also say it’s because I’m busy and He understands that.
There are a lot of things to do, but sometimes we must let the work pile up and spend time with God instead.
But what if God was too busy for me? God, I need your help. I can’t pay my bills this month. Busy signal. God, my mother isn’t well, please make her whole once again. Busy signal. God, I’m fighting this drug addiction and can’t make it out on my own. Busy signal. What if? This is exactly how I was treating God. I was too busy to add him to my list.
The guilt since has not passed, but I recall one thing in particular that a pastor said during a sermon, “Remember God loves you unconditionally and He is in everything that we do, ‘…For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go’” (Joshua 1:9, NLT).
I was being selfish, forgetting that this life I’m living isn’t for me, but for my Lord.
I ended up repenting (I stopped making excuses) and I know I am forgiven. My eyes have also opened up to a new way to praise God. 1) In line at the grocery store: God I thank you for allowing me to be able to buy food for my table. 2) At the laundromat: God I praise your Holy Name for clean bedding as many do not have a place to lie their head. 3) My God, my God, You have so blessed me with the family and friends in my life that will be enjoying these potatoes with me. 4) God, as I’m about to rest, I thank you in advance for waking me up whole. With this new way of praising God, I now encourage myself to allow the list of to-dos to grow bigger and bigger while I first commune with God.
There are a lot of things to do, but sometimes we must let the work pile up and spend time with God instead. Even if at first this seems less productive or feels like “wasting time,” how can it be wasting time when it’s spending time with God? We tend to move so quickly through life that oftentimes anything that we do that is not on our list is seen as time wasted. But in truth, what is on our list is wasting time, distracting us from why we were created in the first place—to worship God. We forget that God puts his relationship with us as a priority, and he wants it to stay strong and not be weakened by other distractions that may come our way. When God thinks of me I want him to say, “Look at my daughter with whom I am well pleased.” Lessons come in all shapes and sizes and in this case, it came in the form of a list.