Sheep are distracted and harassed. “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd” (Matthew 9:36). What happens when the shepherds that serve the church are also distracted and harassed?
Over the past decade people and pastors alike have been wowed by an endless stream of “time saving” devices. Have you ever noticed that every “time saving” device you add to your life seems to leave you with less time? It is one more thing to manage, one more thing to distract.
Technology certainly speeds things up, but not all of the effects are good. Pastors are not exempt. With our desire to stay “connected” and “be in touch with everyone at all times” we end up falling into this same trap. When I am in touch and connected with everyone 24/7 is it really possible to have a meaningful relationship with God? With my wife? With that One person who really needs my undivided and uninterrupted attention to address the needs of their frazzled soul? I don’t’ think so. I don’t think it is possible.
Once again, we as pastors are victims of the same sins of busyness we observe in others. We are occupied with many things and so begin to believe that we are being spiritual and productive. Who are we kidding? Christ made it a regular habit to pull away to the quiet, undistracted place because he knew that without that he would never enjoy the richness of the relationship with his father. All meaningful relationships need that. We all need that – sheep, and their shepherds.
“In the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed” (Mark 1:35).
Are you taking time to “unplug”?