I read another great Denis Waitley quote this week: “We spend too much energy worrying about the things we want to do but can’t, instead of concentrating on doing things we can do but don’t.” Are you so busy waiting to do something huge for Christ that you miss the little things you could be doing each day? Do you get frustrated when looking at the accomplishments of other Christians as compared to how you perceive your own effectiveness? It’s time we reevaluate our purpose and start seizing the opportunities that are all around us.
Fretting over the things we want to do but can’t wastes time in two ways. First, any time spent worrying is of absolutely no avail. Nothing about a situation changes when we worry; the only change that may occur is a negative change in your health. Worrying causes stress, and stress is a silent destroyer of health. Second, the time we spend thinking of those things we can’t do steals time from those things we could and should be doing. The energy given to worrying about things we can’t do simply masks the common malady of procrastination. We have no idea how much time we have left on this earth, but I guarantee you that none of us has enough time to procrastinate for even a moment. Time is ticking away from each of us and we have limited time to accomplish all that we can.
There are so many things we could be doing but we don’t. Why? One reason is a fear of failure. We know we are capable of doing something, but what if we fail? What if someone laughs at us? Do we really want to face the One we call Lord and tell Him we would have done so much more for Him but we were afraid someone would laugh at us? One way to overcome the fear of doing something is by imagining yourself before God when He asks what you did for Him. Will we be able to recite a list of actions we took? Will we be able to tell Him of how we stared down our reluctance, abandoned our fear of embarrassment and just went for it? How much better would this feel than having to hang our heads in shame over caring more about what someone else thought than what Christ would think?
Another reason we don’t seize every opportunity is because we are afraid we actually might succeed. If we are successful, that is going to mean more responsibility, more time out of our schedule, more weight on our shoulders. God will not give us more than we are able to handle, and He will help us carry any responsibility. In fact, He’ll make what we’re carrying seem light as a feather. The joy we feel from doing things for Christ will far outlast any burdens we may have to bear.
What are you not doing that you should be doing? What are you afraid of? Stop wasting time thinking of what you want to be doing and instead refocus that energy into things you can be doing. Make a list of three things you can do for Christ this week… write it down! Additionally, write down something you’ve not done simply because of your fear. Now write down one step you will take this week to begin facing that fear, one step that will move you toward accomplishing that task. When we focus our energy on those things we can be doing, we will find less and less time available to worry about those things we can’t.