It’s Tuesday night and I just got home from devo at the church building with my youth group. It has been a very busy day and it is only going to get busier as the days and hours start to count down before we leave for our Honduras mission trips. It seems like I do this every year. You know the routine; I bet I am not alone on this. You sit down with a daytimer, pencil in activities and events, stack them neatly into days and weekends, and sit back and say, “I can do this.” It looks so logical, so organized, so, “do-able.” Then, as the events and activities start to take place, and things start to bog down, energy levels plummet, and time slips away before your very eyes, you ask yourself, “What was I thinking?” Yep, been there, done that, came back for more.
I do it all of the time. I do it year after year. You think I would learn, you think I would remember the last time. But no, not me. Here I am again. Trying to do too much in too little time. Squeezing every drop out of the day. Waiting to the last minute to get things done. I am definitely not a type A personality. I don’t know the scale but I figure I am about a type R, maybe even a Z. But that is the way I am, and I get it done. Sometimes I don’t know how, but I guess I thrive on pressure. Some people, maybe a lot of people, are like that.
We are 9 days away from leaving for Honduras. I am getting e-mails everyday from people telling me how excited they are about getting down there to work. Indeed the excitement is running high as my two teams prepare their final preparations. I am excited too, but trying to tie up all of the loose ends, collecting the last of the payments, paying off the rest of the bills, and buying the last of supplies are a pressing matter right now. Trying to plan out the work details for the 2 trips, making housing assignments, and getting all of the paperwork done is suppressing my excitement, and my joy. Has that ever happened to you? Have you ever been so busy doing good stuff that you have taken the joy right out of it? We need to be careful not to work ourselves into this type of situation.
Tim Hines told me a very poignant story about this very point. “Satan called his demons together for a little meeting one day. He asked them what their strategies were to tempt man and lure them away from their relationship with God. One by one they gave their ideas of how to get man to fall. One said he tempted man with riches. Satan was impressed. Another said he tempted with greed. Satan nodded in agreement. Another demon suggested sex. Again, Satan shook his head in agreement, yet said nothing. One by one they came forward, discussing all of the various ways to tempt man. Money. Promotions. Sports. Hobbies. Work. Finally, Satan spoke. All of these ideas are good, and will work on some. But, he said, I am looking for something that will work on everyone. Something that anyone would fall for. Silence fell on the multitude of demons. Finally, a wise and crafty demon, one of Satan’s highest ranking demons, spoke. He said, there is a simple and easy solution to this dilemma. Just keep the people busy and convince them they have plenty of time. Satan thought for a moment, and with a wicked smile, agreed. Keep them busy, even doing good things, and convince them that they have plenty of time. Perfect.”
Let’s be on guard. As we get ready to go to Honduras, let’s do some soul searching. Let’s examine our motives. Let’s examine our intentions. Let’s examine our hearts. As we get ready to go to Honduras, let’s get excited about the opportunities to serve God. To serve the poor. To serve the homeless. To serve the fatherless. To serve the weak and broken hearted. Let’s get excited to preach the good news about the love of Jesus. Let’s do it with the right attitude, the right motivation, and the right intent. Whatever we do in word or deed let’s do it in the name of Jesus and give him the glory. In doing this we will foil Satan’s attempt to keep us busy for all of the wrong reasons. LET’S DO IT!!!