Hurried, Harried, or Hopeful?

These days are you hurried, harried or hopeful? The question popped into my mind as I felt restless during my morning quiet time. Sensing a rising urgency to finish up and move into my day, the question begged reflection.

When we run into our days armed with a bloated agenda and unrestrained expectations, what are we leaving behind, or worse, missing?

Now, added to the uncomfortable feeling of restlessness, uncertainty caused me to reconsider both my direction for and approach to my day.

Knowing my penchant for haste and multi-tasking in the name of productivity; hurried and harried were descriptors I owned on many days. But hopeful? Maybe.

Glancing back at the short devotional I read earlier, something caught my attention. In John 21, Jesus meets the disciples on the beach with breakfast, but verse 4 tells us they did not recognize Him.

Back to the question, hurried, harried or hopeful, I wondered how many times I failed in recognizing Jesus in my days due to being hurried or harried?

woman with long light brown hair, jacket pants purse, looking at watch in a hurry

Rather than remaining hopeful in following Him through my days, like a petulant child I ran in every direction compelled by my own desires and expectations.

All in the name of productivity, but sacrificing rest, peace and intimacy with Christ in the process. In fact, to me that is the exact definition of harried.

“Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset.”

Saint Francis de Sales

Surely time conscious, on earth for a short three- and one-half years with a monumental mission, Jesus never hurried.

No one had greater demands on their time than Jesus, yet He entirely accomplished all the work the Father gave Him to do (John 17:4) without becoming harried.

woman in orange sweater, short blond hair ay table with laptop, eyes closed in prayer

Yes, He was God, but He was also every bit as human as we are, He understands schedule complexities, responsibilities and the demands of our lives today.

In fact, He invites us to rest, to a better way of laboring without hurry or harassment from a hopeful perspective with Him.

3 Keys to Hopeful Productivity

If hurried and harried describe the tone of your days, Jesus invites you to slow down and try a new approach. One which allows you to pursue productivity without the high cost of losing your inner peace, or intimacy with Christ.

Instead of the focus of your hope each day resting in the outcome of your accomplishments, shift the focus of your hope to resting in moving through your day with Christ.

  • Guidance. Trust your schedule to God’s guidance. Learn to follow, not lead; allow God’s guidance to divinely interrupt your schedule. I remember a dozen times where God altered my day, and in the moment, I bristled, but later saw the perfection of the change. Only God sees the entire picture.
  • Goodness. Trust God’s goodness in the events of your day. Whether running smoothly or hitting all the bumps of interruptions and mishaps, trust everything is flowing exactly the way He desires for His absolute best for you.
  • Grace. Trust God’s grace is sufficient for your day, without rushing, striving or worrying. Remember He goes first into your day, into every situation. He equips you, accompanies you and enables you for every good work.

Though I still battle restlessness at times as I start my day, choosing a perspective shift of focusing my hope for the day on God’s guidance, goodness and grace instead of a neatly stacked pile of accomplishments, steadies my schedule anxiety.

But the biggest benefit by far remains the sweeter fellowship throughout my day with Jesus, as I experience the freedom and ease of surrender to His perfect way.

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