i’ve had an extraordinary blessing in my life for the past 5 years. that blessing is our saturday night prayer/worship time. it’s very spontaneous, fun and deep. it has been the anchor to my spiritual devotional life during really hard or frustrating seasons of my life. another plus is that most of my closest friends are there with me (it is such a joy to have friends who love God).
yet, after 5 years…the group is still a handful of people. it has never really grown. now (before i talk about this) i don’t believe everyone is called to a lifestyle of 24-7 prayer where that is their sole occupation. God calls people to fill that (very important) role, He calls others to finance things, He calls others to lead things and calls others to market things.
my concern is that when i talk to people about how we would love for them to come and experience God (one time can change your life if you let Him) with us, they look at me and start talking about how they don’t have time for it. they many times make quick comments how my friends and i don’t have lives yet (that are bogged down in work, family and “other stuff”) and we’ll understand one day. they also talk about how God can meet, speak and encounter them at their house.
i love these people and would never desire to judge them. many do have busy lives and things they are committed to and while what they say about us may be partially true, my friends and i do not attend these saturday night sessions cause we don’t have anything better to do. one couple just moved into their new house yesterday, yet they’ll be there tonight. we have planned this time in our lives. we make excuses on anything else that tries to conflict with the prayer time. we hold this night as a priority.
many times i think we consider the “extra times” with God (times away from a sunday or wednesday service) in a corporate setting to be for people who can’t find an excuse not to go (like these “extra times” are not needed and are a waste). i am convinced that christianity calls a person to MAKE time…not to see if they have time. it’s part of the treasure in a field parable. time is our greatest treasure. if we really want something, we will do whatever it takes to get it…including planning our time.
though there ARE those with legitimate excuses, the truth is that many people who give me an excuse just don’t want to come (i say that in love). i understand that…there was a time i didn’t want to either. all i can do is pray for their hearts to change. i don’t mind if God doesn’t want them to come, but i don’t want to see them miss out because they don’t want to come (and i am remembering to love them into that decision).
what in your life are you making excuses for? what are you holding back from or not committing to because (when we get honest) you just don’t want to? have you asked God to help you with that? it’s not about going to everything you can or doing everything you can…it’s about asking God to plan your schedule. where does He want you? what does He want you to do?