Commit to committing differently

There are two problems in the Church today that I don’t think get enough air time and because of this I reckon it causes a lot of burn out and leaves individuals feeling purposeless.

People overcommitting themselves , and committing ourselves to the wrong things.

We all know a person or people in our Christian circles that are involved in just about every aspect of the congregation. Behind the scene’s, on the welcoming team, the prayer team and the 20 other ministries. They are there with bells on. I am not suggesting that they shouldn’t be serving, but show me a person who is forever on the run from one ministry to another, and I will show you a person who more than likely doesn’t even realise how many people they have overlooked while they were “serving the Lord”. I would also suggest that their physical, mental and spiritual health are being impacted as well.

The second problem is really easy to miss and usually can be avoided if invested in a healthy Christian community. But because some believers avoid that type of vulnerability, and others don’t like to seek counsel,  they often end up committing to things and ministries that are not connected to where they should be headed. Unfortunately doing this can  remove them from the direction God wants them to be on. I don’t think people deliberately do this to sabotage the journey they are on, some commitments are made with all good intentions, but without much deep thought.

Filling our time up with commitments is inevitable, so it makes sense to slow down, be intentional and tactical. Especially when it comes to our faith walk.

Have you seen these things in the people around you or through reading this can recognize one of these traits in yourself? Recently I found myself making a commitment that on one hand was in line with my values, and I was pretty sure it would be the right thing to do, but after thinking and praying about it, I realised that following through would have taken me away from what I really wanted to invest my time in. Next time I will think and pray about it first!

Jesus didn’t overcommit and he was pretty intentional about how and where he used his time. If it was good enough for him then I want some of that wisdom!

I have been reading the Gospel of Mark and in chapter one there is a great example of Jesus not overcommitting or committing to the wrong thing. I would say from looking at this passage that he is being very intentional about his movements. We should take note as it could save us a lot of time and heart ache.

  1. Stop – Jesus went and prayed. He removed himself from distraction and noise and went to a place where he could be still and listen. Its imperative that Christians make this a spiritual discipline, especially when it comes to working out what to invest your time in.
  2. Go with confidence – When Simon and others turned up letting him know it was time to go, ( to meet the expectations of the crowd no doubt!) it doesn’t look like Jesus felt the need to meet every ones needs by staying. And while hanging around wouldn’t have been a bad thing, clearly the decision to leave came from hearing Gods purpose for his direction.  We can move forward with confidence as well when we are intentional about stopping, listening and discerning. We need to stop keeping busy filling gaps, meeting the needs of disorganised people start being more tactical with what we are saying yes to.

Thanks for reading and as always, if you found anything helpful from this post or want to add anything, please leave a comment.
























24 thoughts on “Commit to committing differently

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  1. Well done, Dave. I absolutely agree. More Christians with good intentions need to be more discerning and learn how to graciously say “no.” What we have here is a typical “Martha” situation, serving but taking time away from intimate time with the Lord. You’re right, we all know people like this. (I was one of them long ago!)

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  2. I agree with Dettinger47’s comment. What you described is very common in the church. Overcommitted people are seen as the ones who really love God. Those who refuse to bite more than they can chew are told they need to spend more time serving in God’s house. And it’s sad. I get it a lot. I am a wife, a Mum to 3 kids, I work full time, I am youth leader and I also run my girl’s organisation. With all of these, I always say my marriage is my first ministry and anything that makes me too tired to serve in my first ministry is doing too much for me. I used to be in the music ministry in church but I realised I was getting really stressed with juggling the meetings. So I decided to leave. A lot of people keep saying I need to go back and serve God in that capacity. And they try to make me feel like I’m not doing enough for God. No matter how I explain, they don’t seem to get it. But I thank God that I am now the type who can comfortably say no. I have seen a lot of marriages that have been affected negatively due to wives overcommitting in church and neglecting their homes. I pray we ask God first before saying yes to anything.
    Sorry for this long comment.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Efua thanks for taking the time to write your comment and you don’t need to be sorry. All good. Sounds like you have learnt to no longer over commit and are more discerning when it comes to committing to stuff which is awesome. Its hard enough being a mum and working full time I imagine! Thanks again, good to hear from you.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you so much for this Dave. I can sometimes struggle with doing too much in the church and I also can find it difficult to say no.
    I love how you said,
    ‘Jesus didn’t overcommit and he was pretty intentional about how and where he used his time.’
    That really resonated with me.
    Thank you,
    Hayley 😊

    Liked by 2 people

  4. These are very clear points you made and I think a lot of people can relate to them. When I was looking at a church (my toxic church experience) all of my peers were too busy to hang outside of the church, yet they claimed they wanted to spend time with me. It was very misleading and hurtful to me, especially then because I didn’t have any friends in the area. I just had my husband, and you’re right, people can easily get overlooked those in the ministry and others who think they have time with that person.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks Dave. Saying no can definitely be hard, especially in our people pleasing culture. When I first became a Christian I struggled with this. I felt I needed to serve as much as possible and although I enjoyed it, I was exhausted. I met my wife about a year after coming to Christ and found my ministry was really getting in the way of building a relationship with her. I prayed and talked through some things with my wife and decided I needed to step down from some of my serving. This was such a refreshing season of growth and rest in my life.

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  6. I would say “Amen” at least 100 Times. I saw people overcommitting in one particular church where I served. Then they experienced burnout and dropped out. The pastor put them on a guilt trip. I constantly tell people to give themselves wholeheartedly to one particular thing rather than spread themselves thin.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And Amen to that brother. That’s great advice, I am glad you are doing that Matt. More leaders need to be mindful of that, care less about “filling gaps” and more about providing space for people to grow and learn about how they contribute to the body

      Liked by 1 person

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