Tuesday, February 15, 2005


Phil Ryken also has some counsel on how to deal with overload and overwhelmedness. Read the whole thing for his pastoral counsel, but here are his summary exhortations:

First, whatever else you do, make time for communion with Christ. Remember what Jesus said to Martha, that only “one thing is necessary” (Luke 10:42)—that is, to be with Jesus, listening to what he says and talking with him about what we need. It is only when we allow God to minister to us through Bible study and prayer that the rest of life makes any sense at all.

Second, embrace the limitations of your finitude. Rather than feeling anxious and distressed about everything you’re not getting done, or always complaining that you need more time, take satisfaction in the many daily reminders that you are not God. You are not all-powerful, all-present, and all-knowing. Only God is. So when the overload confronts you with your limitations, be reminded that you are only a creature who needs to rest in your Savior’s care (see Matt. 6:25–34; 11:28–30).

Third, choose wisely. The hardest choices in life are not the choices between the good things and the bad things. When it comes to discriminating the good from the bad, most Christians find it relatively easy to tell the difference. No, the hard choices are the ones between the good things and the best things. To make these decisions we need the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, who works through Scripture, through circumstances, through counsel, and through our conscience to help us “discern what is best” (Phil. 1:10; NIV).