Plug into the main thing by unplugging from many things

In one of his Every Day with Jesus devotionals, Selwyn Hughes wrote that he “has learned to say no to many things in order to say yes to the thing.”

As a young, zealous Christian I said yes to almost everything – running a home Bible study, leadership in a Christian women’s group, PTA, teaching at my church, singing in the choir. Name a Christian activity and I’ve probably been involved in it at some point in my life. I didn’t do these things out of obligation but out of  sincere love for Jesus and a desire for others to discover this amazing life in Jesus.

Besides what I considered godly activities, my three children each had sports, music and other activities that required my attendance. In spite of my lofty motives, eventually, over-commitment left me exhausted . . . at the end of my rope.

In what’s known as the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, “You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule.” (The Message)

Forced to reconsider my involvements, I took the summer off from my job (I forgot to mention that I also worked). Over those two leisurely months, I found myself learning to enjoy life again, breathing deeply, re-discovering the magic of creation.

While lounging on the beach and sitting at nightly campfires, I decided to prune my over-busy calendar when I returned home. Like Selwyn Hughes, I began to say no to many unimportant things (unimportant for me) so that I could say yes to God’s focus for my life.

I still found myself tending to become over-busy, unwilling to disappoint people by saying no, and some projects appealed to me so much I wanted to say yes. Pruning my calendar wasn’t an easy one-time experience. I’ve had to do it many times.

As summer approaches and activities wind down, could this be a good time for you to reconsider what your fall schedule should look like? We can’t do our best at anything if we try to do everything.

“Lord, help me to become quiet enough to hear from you about the main focus of my life. Let my thoughts drift in you and find joy in the miracles that surround me. As I prune excess from my life, I lean on your wisdom for guidance.”

book coverRose McCormick Brandon is the author of One Good Work Makes all the Difference and Promises of Home – Stories of Canada’s British Home Children. Visit her website at cover One Good Word 2


About rosemccormickbrandon

An award winning personal experience writer, Rose McCormick Brandon is a frequent contributor to faith magazines, devotionals and compilations, including Chicken Soup for the Soul. Rose is the author of Promises of Home: Stories of Canada's British Home Children (2014). One Good Word Makes all the Difference (2013), He Loves Me Not, He Loves Me (2012) and Vanished: What Happened to My Son. She's a frequent contributor to The Testimony, Today's Pentecostal Evangel and other faith magazines in Canada, U.S. and Australia. Rose also writes about Canadian history, specifically the era of Child Immigration from Britain. Read her stories of child immigrants at:
This entry was posted in Insight, My Imperfect Life, personal experience, Quietness and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Plug into the main thing by unplugging from many things

  1. Sharon Aronson says:

    I awoke this morning, April 14th with a chorus I love coming to my remembrance.

    I Delight To Do Thy Will O Lord

    I delight to do Thy will O Lord,
    I delight to do Thy will.
    And to walk with Thee
    Is not grievous unto me;
    For I delight to do Thy will.

    Psalm 40:6-8 (Amplified Bible)

    6Sacrifice and offering You do not desire, nor have You delight in them; You have given me the capacity to hear and obey [Your law, a more valuable service than] burnt offerings and sin offerings [which] You do not require.
    7Then said I, Behold, I come; in the volume of the book it is written of me;
    8I delight to do Your will, O my God; yes, Your law is within my heart.(A)
    Also see Heb 10:5-9
    Delight…… I think I feel the need to do another study.

    In Jesus,

  2. Sharon Aronson says:

    I well remember those days and although I wasn’t as involved in everything you were I wanted to serve the Lord with gladness but found that the things I was involved in felt more like duties than delights.
    Because of my personality I found it hard to say no. It took me a long while to see it as the fear of man which brings a snare.
    Thankfully the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and I have grown in that regard over these many years. Discerning between working for God and doing the works that God has prepared was a major breakthrough.
    Life changed dramatically for me.
    Sitting at the feet of Jesus helps to keep me from running in circles.

Comments are closed.