Sunday Sermonizing: A Hasty Hustle For The Right Thing (after 11 hours of sleep)
“But I spoke hastily. We must not be hasty. I have become too hot. I must cool myself and think; for it is easier to shout stop! than to do it.” - Treebeard
We are a culture defined by activity. The lack of activity means something is awry. You’re wrong. You’re off. Do something, for God’s sake.
Speed does not lend itself to thought. When we’re in a hurry, we make mistakes. Sometimes they are serious. Most of the time they are avoidable. I know. I’ve made such hasty mistakes.
Renee’ and I are currently in Southeast Asia. The pace here is slower. It’s a refreshing change. But there are signs of our Western velocity everywhere. Money makes us hustle and is a universal motivator.
Life is not a hustle. Faith is not a hustle.
Yet, there is incredible effort necessary for life and faith. It’s not “hustle” for hustle’s sake. Nor is it for money or a better life or happiness.
Hebrews tells us about a hustle for rest.
Let us, therefore, strive to enter that rest, so that no one may fall by the same sort of disobedience. - Hebrews 4:11
The theological implications of this are clear. Christians don’t trust in their own innate goodness, because they know it’s not there. We trust in the goodness of Jesus on our behalf, which is freedom for us. I don’t have to strive to be good enough. I strive to rest in everything that identifies me with Jesus. And it’s enough.
But there’s also a practical implication for the Sabbath rest of God.
I slept for 11 hours yesterday.
This is rare for me.
I frankly don’t like sleeping that long. But at the end of the day, it was good for body and soul. There’s no guilt and no shame in that.
I don’t have to be in such a hurry. Life is more than the abundance of things.
I slept for 11 hours. I questioned my personal industriousness. But rest is not lazy. We have to strive to get there, sometimes. It’s hard to do. Especially in our “go” culture. The church has to fight against this tendency, because she tends to embrace the culture of the soil in which she grows. There are churches all over the United States with arduous names like “Velocity,” “Go Church,” and “Relentless.” While there may be nothing wrong with these churches as a whole - the names alone make me tired.
Maybe I’m just old now.