It’s Friday morning. My kids are at school and I’m home today. My favorite sweatpants are hard at work.
I haven’t had my coffee yet (yikes!) and there’s a stack of papers sitting behind me on the ottoman calling out to be dealt with. I need to switch the laundry, pay bills, and there is a huge amount of behind-the-scenes technical blogging stuff off on my plate, swarming around like fruit flies.
I know that this day will go fast and that my all of boxes won’t be checked, but I have to tell you that today I’m feeling a little discouraged. I’m not sure why – but there are days when I look at the world with a little more negativity. An idealist at heart, I never like those days. Wait…is an “anxious idealist” a thing?
Since we talked recently about busyness and saying “no” to things, I’ve been thinking about “passing the buck.” Delegating.
When I was in school – from elementary through college – I have to confess that I hated group work. I get it – I know the importance of working together – I do it all the time. However, at the beginning of a new project, I’d pretty much volunteer to do it all myself. People loved that. I’m reliable that way.
Even now, I sometimes have to resist the urge to check up on people to make sure things are getting done. It’s awful.
The Bible actually addresses those of us with the “If you want it done right, do it yourself” attitude.
Did you know that Jesus’ disciples delegated important work to other people?
After Jesus was resurrected, it was brought to the attention of the 12 disciples that certain widows weren’t being cared for well. Back then, it was the responsibility of the church (some might argue that it still is) to care for them.
The apostles saw this need as important but also knew they needed to focus on their calling in Acts 6.
2 So the Twelve called a meeting of all the believers. They said, “We apostles should spend our time teaching the word of God, not running a food program.3 And so, brothers, select seven men who are well respected and are full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will give them this responsibility. 4 Then we apostles can spend our time in prayer and teaching the word.”
As a result:
7 God’s message continued to spread. The number of believers greatly increased in Jerusalem, and many of the Jewish priests were converted, too.
They were rewarded for NOT doing it all themselves.
Moses also delegated some of his leadership responsibilities to other people.
In Exodus 18, Moses’ is overwhelmed with his duties too.
14 When Moses’ father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, he asked, “What are you really accomplishing here? Why are you trying to do all this alone while everyone stands around you from morning till evening?”
15 Moses replied, “Because the people come to me to get a ruling from God.”
So Moses is doing good work, but Jethro exclaims:
17 This is not good! 18 You’re going to wear yourself out—and the people, too. This job is too heavy a burden for you to handle all by yourself.
He tells Moses how to get the job done more effectively: select honest, God-fearing men (not just anyone) to help. Men that need to follow their callings too.
22 They should always be available to solve the people’s common disputes, but have them bring the major cases to you. Let the leaders decide the smaller matters themselves. They will help you carry the load, making the task easier for you.
And the icing on the cake.
23 If you follow this advice, and if God commands you to do so, then you will be able to endure the pressures, and all these people will go home in peace.”
I love that the Bible tells us it’s okay to say no. Not to shirk our responsibilities or turn a blind eye to those in need (definitely not!) but to work together to get the job done so that we can follow the path for our lives giving 100% without feeling run down and overwhelmed.
Today, I pray that we can feel freedom from doing it all.
Linking up with Creative Kids.