A national, working with a mission group said, “Missionaries all have watches but nobody has time.” I personally have observed a number of missionaries who work themselves to the point of exhaustion. They are so busy they scarcely have time to eat or rest. Yet, I wonder if some the people they’ve set out to serve feel like the national just mentioned. Kenyans often refer to white people as ‘mzungu’ – people who run in circles. They seem to have so many things to do that they don’t have time for the very people to whom they came to minister.
The problem touches a far wider group of people than just missionaries. It seems to be a sign of the times in which we live. Parents work so hard to provide things for their families, they don’t have time to be with them. Church staffs get so busy doing religious things, they don’t have time to minister to members of their congregations. As a university professor, I was often so busy grading papers, doing lesson plans, working with student government, etc., than I didn’t have time to spend with very kind of the students that drew me to Asbury University in the first place.
At the height of His popularity, large crowds of people often surrounded Jesus. Everyone wanted something from Him. One woman even tried to tug off His coat. The scripture says at times there were so many people coming and going that He didn’t even have time to eat. Yet, somehow He always seemed to have time to deal with the ones who needed Him the most. The account of the meeting between Jesus and Bartimaeus serves to illustrate His willingness to take time with an individual when it seemed He had no time.
Jesus was passing through Jericho for the very last time. He was on His way to Jerusalem where He would be crucified. Intense thoughts of the agony and suffering just ahead must have been on His mind. He was surely concerned about unfinished business as he moved along with “a great number of people” (Mark 10:46). Somehow above the din and press of the crowd, He heard the cry of a blind beggar sitting by the roadside and calling His name.
Even with the weight of the world on His shoulders and the roar of the crowd surrounding Him, Jesus stopped. Mark says, “Jesus stood still” (Mark 10:49). He called for Bartimaeus to come to Him. Think of it! The beginner of all motion stood still and ministered to a blind beggar while on His way to die. Where did He find the strength in the midst of His own trials, to reach out to one who needed Him? I do not believe it was a power surge from His divine side. Rather, I believe He accessed the power of the Holy Spirit that was within. That same Holy Spirit that is available to all true believers today. He promised (Acts 1:4,8).
Jesus will take time for you. He will ‘stand still’ to hear your heart’s cry. Again let me say, He promised (John 6:37). And there is an amazing side benefit of a right relationship with the Savior. He can help you prioritize your time. When you seek first the kingdom of God, other things that need your time and attention can be put in proper order. The Holy Spirit can help you invest your time in the people and things that are the most important.
Do You Have A Watch – But No Time?
~ Brother Roy