If you ask a woman today, “How are you doing?” chances are the response will be a sigh or a groan, followed by words like “We’ve got so much going on in our family!” “I just can’t keep up with everything I’ve got to do!” or “I’m exhausted!”
More often than not, I find that women (and Christian women are no exception) feel overwhelmed by how much they have to do and how little time they have to do it. As a result, many women are living breathless, frazzled, and discouraged lives.
Years ago, I read that the average woman today has the equivalent of fifty full-time servants, in the form of modern, timesaving devices and equipment. That figure may or may not be accurate, but we certainly have many conveniences available to us that were unknown to women of past generations: dishwashers, microwaves, washing machines, dryers, and much more.
So why are our lives more harried and hurried than ever? Why are we so stressed out? There are probably a number of explanations. However, one reason is that we have accepted the lie that we don’t have time to do everything we are supposed to do.
The Example Set by Jesus
The fact is, we have no more nor less time than any other human being who has ever lived. No one, regardless of his position or responsibilities, has ever had more than 24 hours in a day, 168 hours in a week, 52 weeks in a year.
In fact, the Lord Jesus Himself was given only a few short years on earth to accomplish the entire plan of redemption. Talk about a long “to do” list! Yet at the end of His life, Jesus was able to lift His eyes to His Father and say, “I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do” (John 17:4 KJV).
I find that truly amazing. Rarely can I say at the end of the day that I have completed the work I set out to do that day. To the contrary, I frequently drop into bed at night with a long, mental list of the un- finished tasks I had hoped to take care of that day.
How was it possible for Jesus to finish His life’s work, especially in such a short period of time? In Jesus’ words we find a clue—a powerful truth that sets us free from the bondage of hurry and frustration.
The Secret to Having Enough Time
Notice what work Jesus completed in the thirty-three years He was here on the earth: “I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.” That is the secret. Jesus didn’t finish everything His disciples wanted Him to do. (Some of them were hoping He would overthrow the Roman government!) He didn’t finish everything the multitudes wanted Him to do. (There were still people who were sick and lonely and dying.) But He did finish the work that God gave Him to do.
There is virtually never time in a twenty-four hour day for me to do everything that is on everyone else’s “to do” list for me. There is seldom time to accomplish everything that is on my own “to do” list. What a relief to realize I don’t have to do all those things!
The truth is that all I have to do is the work God assigns to me. What freedom it has been for me to accept that there is time for me to do everything that is on God’s “to do” list for my day, for my life!
Freedom from the Tyranny of Busyness
Frustration is the by-product of attempting to fulfill responsibilities God does not intend for us to carry. Freedom, joy, and fruitfulness come from seeking to determine God’s priorities for each season of life and then setting out to fulfill those priorities, in the power of His Spirit, realizing that He has provided the necessary time and ability to do everything that He has called us to do.
Making It Personal
Do you feel that you don’t have time to do everything? Seek God for what He wants you to do. Then prioritize that and let the rest go.
© Revive Our Hearts. Adapted from Lies Women Believe and the Truth that Sets Them Free by Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth. Used with permission. Available at our store.