Treadmills are not my friends. I have utter disdain for running (or, in my case, walking) on those awful contraptions. Yes, I do have one. I found the perfect spot for it – a storage facility. Why pretend that I’m actually going to use it?
So you’ll understand my frustration when I say that I often feel like my life is on a treadmill. Just walking along, looking nowhere in particular, and getting absolutely nowhere, be it fast or slow. I tend to feel this way when it seems like I’m just not being productive. This feeling of lack of productivity has been growing steadily over the last couple of years, both at home and at work. Mind you, I did manage to plan a wedding and move (twice!) this past year, both major accomplishments. But when I’m settled into regular everyday life, it seems like no matter how hard or how much I work, I don’t have much to show for it. I work on the same projects for months or even years, but they just refuse to go away, lingering like bad breath. Somebody get me a Tic-Tac!
I didn’t realize how much this was bothering me until this past Tuesday night at Beth Moore’s Bible study. She went over Judges 6 where we learn of a time (like many) in Israel’s history when their enemies are so oppressive that anything they produce is ruined. They worked hard but remained in abject poverty.
Those verses mirrored what was happening inside me whenever I tried to work at something. It just seemed like I couldn’t finish anything, so there have been many times when I’ve thought, “Why bother?” At work I know that there will always be difficult people to impede my progress, no matter how charming I am…email traffic will never end…just when I finish one weekly status report I have to write another. Then I go home and consider that there will always be another dirty dish…the toilet will never truly be clean…I can always go buy new clean underwear. And, in the great scheme of things, will anything I do really matter?
But I was greatly encouraged by John 15:8 – “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.” This verse and the accompanying passage proved to me that, as a disciple of Christ, I was created and saved with the intention of being productive. Colossians 1:10 speaks more on this subject – “That you may walk (live and conduct yourselves) in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him and desiring to please Him in all things, bearing fruit in every good work…” (Amplified Bible). As I work, I’m to seek God’s approval, not approval from others. The end result is a productive life.
Now that I have it settled in my mind that God meant for me to be productive, I’m wondering what I will produce. Lots of new software? Something interesting to read? And I hope a clean house is in there somewhere. As for the treadmill, looks like I’ll need to sell it because I’ve given it up for jazzercise. At least for now.