When children misbehave, you put them in time out. However, sometimes you yourself need time out because you’re in something over your head and you just need to step back. There is also another way in which you need time out. It starts with understanding who God is.
There’s a difference between God and you. For starters, God is all present and all knowing. It seems, though, that sometimes you get mixed up. With the advent of smart phones you sometimes behave as if you are God or need to be God—always available. Are you doing this for the people for whom you seek to be available or for yourself and your need to be needed so that you feel important and necessary?
What can happen with this constant accessibility and availability is that you become a crutch for others and/or others become a crutch for you. Instead of pointing to God and looking to God, you look to people and in turn teach people look to you. This is so particularly with young people. You tell them that you are always there for them and often fail to tell them that God is also there. Do you and them need time out?
Here is another way in which you be missing the difference between God and you. Instead of turning to God for guidance and strength, you turn to the cell phone. Thus, you have no testimony to share of how God gave you guidance and strength with your young people. You silently pass on the message that you don’t need God. Yet, God knows and sees what you and the smart phone cannot. What God has for you goes beyond what is captured on a smart phone. Using the smart phone can put a boundary around what God will do in and through you as you tune out the spirit and tune in the phone. Do you need time out to tune into the Spirit and hear what the Lord is saying?
Of course it is comforting to know that there are people who care and people on whom you can call. It’s great to have so much knowledge at your fingertips. But, what are the limits? What are the motives? When is it about supporting and engendering a deeper, more intimate relationship with God and when is it about you? When will you and your young people learn to fully trust the Lord?
You are already significant to God. Your being here speaks to your necessity—God has work for you to do.
Point people, especially young people, to God in Jesus Christ as their source of wisdom, strength, as their all sufficiency. Is it time for time out for you and them?
Living fully. Living faithfully. Following Christ.
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