The Rush Hour
By Luann Rogers
I'm in a hurry to get things done. I rush and rush until life's no fun. All I really gotta do is live and die, but I'm in a hurry and don't know why" (country and western song).
We all - wives, mothers, employees - feel these sentiments at times. Why are we in a hurry, and why do we fill our schedules and say no to good works and Christian service?
We have a saying at home when someone is late: "They are running on Irish time." During a gospel meeting in Northern Ireland we were amazed and refreshed by the casual attitude of our Irish brethren toward time. Sunday morning worship started 30 minutes late. When we asked why, we learned that "everyone wasn't here yet." They were waiting on a sister who they knew would be there.
Rushing around seems to be an American trait. Since women entered the labor force in large numbers, we think our calendars must he filled with activities (husband's, children's, and our own).
We never have an "unplanned" moment. An endless stream of books and seminars (including some in the church) propose to teach us "time and stress management." I propose that if we did not struggle to fill every waking moment with specific duties and tasks to accomplish, we would have no stress to manage.
Don't get me wrong. Planning is good. I know from personal experience that as children grow and our husband becomes busier, you have to make plans to keep everyone "on track." This is true whether you work in or out of the home.
Something is wrong, though, when we schedule for the sake of scheduling and the schedule becomes our God.
We have no time to help our children's school teachers. We have no time to help our neighbors. We have no time to teach the lost. We have no time to feed the hungry. We have no time to study the Bible, or even to pray. We have no time because we are too busy scheduling our time.
We teach ourselves to say no, when we should be saying yes. Good works are the very reason for our creation and recreation. We are "created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them" (Eph. 2:10).
"Priorities" is an important word for godly women. We know the Scripture says "seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness" (Matt. 6:33).
Are we like the Israelites who asked for a king when they needed a prophet? Are we busy planning, organizing-scheduling-when we ought to be working? You will not have a second chance to visit that friend in the hospital, or fix food for a funeral. When your husband needs attention and affection, are you too busy or too tired for him? We must follow Psalm 46:1 which tells us to "Be still, and know that I am God."
Why are we in such a hurry? And what are we in a hurry about? Do you suppose Dorcas ever told someone she was too busy? "Be not weary in well doing" (Gal. 6:9), but be weary of busy work that has no real purpose.
A sure sign that our schedules are too full is when we have no time for family. Your husband should be your most valued treasure; put your marriage above everything. Let us never be so schedule-bound that we have no time for impulse.
If I can't find the time to mop the floor, who will remember or care?
A final and important result of a hurried life is that we neglect ourselves. We need rest and reflection. Stress and anxiety go hand-in-hand with a tight schedule. When we use our emotional reserves in "keeping busy" tempers are short, others are hurt by harsh words and actions, and we make mistakes.
Jesus and his apostles needed to rest and reflect at times. They got away from the crowd on occasion (Mark 6:31). If we have no retreat time for ourselves, we rob God.
The household revolves around wife and mother. The husband is the head, but the mother sets the tone and atmosphere - whether for good or for ill.