The Sneakiest Strategy

The Sneakiest Strategy

The difficulty comes when your work time and your down time are so full that there’s no room for God time.

Julie CattonMar 20, 2023, 12:37 AM


We’re busy with so many things, good things. We’re busy working, learning or exercising. We’re busy living life to its fullest, seizing the day. So in our down time it’s great to be able to just relax. And we all relax differently. We watch television until we nod off to sleep. We ‘play’ on Facebook, scrolling through feeds as the hours tick by. We surf the net, for nothing in particular . . . just looking because it doesn’t actually require any brain power.

None of these things is essentially wrong. The difficulty comes when your work time and your down time are so full, that there’s no room for God time. 

And that plays right into the master deceiver’s hands. We might be able to tattle off a quick prayer, and maybe read a Bible verse that someone has posted on fb, but really it’s nothing of quality. It’s not spending time in prayer and studying our Bible. And its most definitely not allowing us to “Be still and know that He is God” (Psalm 46:10), because we’re too busy! Between doing the things we HAVE to do and doing the things we THINK will help us relax and make us happy, we’re not doing the one thing that will give us true peace and contentment. The one thing that will change our lives from just “getting through it” to really and truly “living it”. 

God has given us one whole day to relax: Sabbath. And so we read the verse “The Sabbath was made for man not man for the Sabbath” (Mark 2:27) and figure that if Sabbath was made for us then we can do whatever we want. Whatever makes us feel good, right? 

Our Sabbath can end up looking a bit like this: Get up after nice relaxing sleep in. Drive to church listening to favourite “chill out” radio station. Arrive at church 10 minutes before the service ends (at least you made an effort). Spend afternoon at friend’s house watching YouTube. 

In this scenario though, there seems to be a complete absence of perhaps the most crucial thing for Sabbath—and that would be God. Our focus is entirely on us instead of on the One who created us. We believe the lie “If God really loved you, He would want you to have the things that make you feel happy.” But here’s the catch: what we think will make us happy and what God KNOWS will make us happy can be quite different things. And if I was a betting person, I’d put money on God knowing you better than you know yourself (I guess it’s the whole “He created you” thing!).

So, what will really make us happy? You’ve probably heard it so many times it’s started to sound cliché. But you’re hearing it because it’s true. Spend time with God. Connect with Him. Pray. Read your Bible. Worship your Creator. 

Time is the one thing that money can’t buy. It’s the one thing we wish we had more of, but often waste what we have. So next time you’re tempted to waste away “down time”, try to be still. Then maybe you really will get to know that He is God. 




Julie Catton lives in Melbourne, Victoria, and is a primary teacher who is currently enjoying staying at home with her children. 

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