It's early evening and I've checked Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest multiple times.  You know, just in case anything interesting happened while I was living my life aside from a laptop and internet connection.  My phone's inbox is filled to the brim with text messages that need responses.  Yet my heart just isn't in it.  I'm yearning for actual fellowship with actual people. 

I feel overwhelmed.  My phone vibrates with a voicemail or text and I just sit and stare at it, as if answering another half-hearted message just takes too much effort.  I get on Facebook and have messages that only say, "hey :p" or "what's up?".  I have notifications that are nothing more than game requests or me being informed that someone liked a comment or status.  And Twitter?  Nothing more than a place to let out momentary thoughts.  Why are these things so addicting?  Can someone please analyze them and tell me what their merit is? 

It's so easy to get caught up in these things without even realizing the hold they have on us.  Sometimes, when I get to the point where I'm just so overwhelmed with everything, I sign off on it all.  I step away and say, "God, I need You more."  Jokingly, I've referred to these times as sabbaticals, but the more I think about it, the more I realize that's exactly what they are. 

The literal definition of a sabbatical is any extended period of leave from one's customary work, especially for rest, to acquire new skills or training.  What an awesome definition, because isn't that really what we're seeking when we step away from everything and give God our full attention?  We're asking to acquire new skills, new training in how to become closer to our Father and how to better follow Him.  We're stepping into a time of rest from our daily routine in order to seek a deeper relationship with Christ. 

Jimmy Needham's song "The Only One" illustrates what I'm talking about beautifully.  The lyrics state, "'Cause all of my gods, they have @ signs and hashtags, but I'm raising my white flag.  'Cause I'm needing what You have to give me...You're the only One who satisfies me."  How many of us, if we were to be honest with ourselves, realize that we've traded in time with God for time on Facebook?  We've traded in true fellowship with our Father through communication in prayer for synthetic fellowship with others through muted, unemotional conversations.  

I'm not saying that Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Skype, texting, or e-mailing are wrong.  I'm not telling you to delete any and all accounts you may have.  I am saying that those sources of communication were never meant to replace what truly matters. 

As children of God, it should break our hearts that we seek anything more than we seek Him.  We spend hours upon hours with phones, laptops, and television remotes attached to our hands.  Yet we drag our feet to our prayer closets.  We settle for small morning devotions in order to fulfill our spiritual appetite for the day, but it's not unusual to find us spending an entire afternoon reading a good book.  We invest more time in carnal activities, things that will eventually pass away, than we do in the most important relationship we will ever have the opportunity of maintaining.  Why?  

I encourage you to take a step back and spend some quality time with the Father.  Whether it be for a few hours, a day, a week, or more, I encourage you to take a sabbatical of your own.  Take a break from the noise and tune in to what God's wanting to say to you.  Sometimes He whispers, and sometimes He shouts.  But if we're not listening for Him, it doesn't really matter what volume He uses.  God bless. 

1 comment:

  1. You know, I missed so many of your posts because they didn't show up in my blogger feed. I am catching up now, and I love this one! sabbaticals, "prayer closets", all great terms, so thoughtfully done!