It can be very easy to get so caught up in ministry and serving others that you start to neglect your relationship with God. When your relationship with God is out of place, then your own needs don’t get met.
During the summer, before I moved to New York, I spent so much intimate time with God. It was one of my first summers where I wasn’t dying to hang out with my friends all of the time. I didn’t have the constant desire to go out and fill my days up. I didn’t need constant company because I was in the Presence of the Lord.
It was a transitional season in my life where I just needed to seek His face and His will for my life. I had just graduated from college and all I knew is that I was called to New York. Standing on this Word wasn’t easy, but it drew me closer to God because I had to pray and fast to hear His voice the clearest out of all of the opinions that were weighing into my life. Because I was not yet in my ministry, I wasn’t pouring into anyone else. My cup was being filled so that I could be ready to hit the ground running when I made it to the Big Apple.
I say all of this to say, God was very much the priority in my life. My eyes were on Him alone because I didn’t have anything else taking up my attention. But, now that I have at least 10 different tasks vying for my attention, it can be hard to keep Christ at the center of it all. I find myself unenergized, grouchy, irritable, frustrated, etc. those days where I don’t give God the proper praise. Everything else becomes a distraction instead of the purposeful work that He has called me to. Just because you are in the place where God wants you to be doesn’t necessarily mean you are operating in His will. We have to be careful to avoid this trap.
This is a lesson that has taken me, in my opinion, way too long to grasp. But this is all a growing and learning experience. I’m realizing that I’m probably not the funnest to be around if I let worry and fear cloud my thoughts. It affects my mood. It affects my interactions with people. It steals my joy.
God has been teaching me how to be present. My thoughts shouldn’t be consumed with something that happened last week nor should they be filled with what I want to happen in three years. In the process of being present, I have to make sure I’m doing everything with a purpose. That purpose will always point back to Christ. That will help me spend time with God while still spending time with other people, doing the work I’m supposed to be doing.
So, no matter how busy our schedules are, we have to keep our eyes on Jesus. We have to keep our thoughts on the task at hand and what God is working in us at that current moment. I know that the more I walk in my purpose every day, the more I’ll feel alive and intimate with God. Of course I still need to spend alone time with Him in the Word and in prayer, but whenever I start to fall into a meaningless routine, I have to check to make sure it leads back to Jesus. If it doesn’t, then something needs readjusting. Simple as that.
An example? If you feel like all you do at your job is send emails and do phone calls, try to see the bigger picture. Adjust your lens a bit. Make every person feel encouraged as you get off the phone with them. This could be a simple, “I hope you have a wonderful week” as you end the call instead of the usual, “Have a nice day. Bye.” There is always something we can do to bless someone else and in turn feel good on the inside.
God doesn’t want us to feel empty. He wants us to make Him the source of our joy so that He can fill it whenever it’s low. If something else is our strength, then we can be sure that it will never fully sustain us. We all need a refueling here and there. Let’s try to make sure we operate out of the best oil in the land, the Holy Spirit.
I hope this encourages you!