There Are No Detours

Oct 20 2023 - Eric Buresh

And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. Colossians 3:17 

A few posts ago, I wrote that “walking in the Spirit” or being “led by the Spirit” is like being connected to the locomotive of a train. The Spirit provides both the power and the direction. We just stay connected. When you are being “led by the Spirit,” there are no detours. Every moment, every step, is powerful, confident, and meaningful. If you are walking in the Spirit, even when your day would otherwise feel off track, you know you are perfectly on track because you are being pulled along by the Holy Spirit. There are no detours. This is where peace exists. This is where contentment and joy multiply. This is where the fruit of the Spirit blossoms and miracles happen moment by moment as the Spirit puts you exactly where He wants you to be. 

I used to be a passionate proponent of maintaining “work-life-balance.” I used to religiously follow a life rhythm to insure that balance. I had rules and priority structures and self-discipline. To bring back the metaphor, I used to think I was the locomotive of my train . . . that I was keeping everything on track. Even though I had no idea where the track was supposed to go. My work-life-balance helped me to survive in my own strength, but it did not bring peace, nor did it bring the fruit of the Spirit. It brought, more times than not, frustration, impatience, and a plethora of missed opportunities as I became increasingly obsessive about my pursuit of self-enforced balance. Inflexibility marked my daily schedule. When I had a time marked off for work, I was going to work even if the Lord opened the door wide open to a more meaningful opportunity. If I had a time marked off for Sabbath, I would rest even if the Lord opened the door wide to a plainly better use of my time. If I had time marked off for family, I was going to do family activities even if the Lord opened the door to miraculous other opportunities. I was going to maintain my own balance. That was how I would survive. Self-sufficient to the core. 

I didn’t really trust the Holy Spirit with such an important task as balancing my life. I was confident I could do it better. Thankfully, God worked on my heart and opened my eyes to reality. The Holy Spirit balances my life infinitely better than I ever could. When the Holy Spirit is the locomotive, and I am a car on His train being led along by His power and direction, He provides an Abundant Life balance. There is no separate category for work; no separate category for family time; no separate category for Sabbath or ministry time. It is all just Abundant Life led by the Spirit. All my previously existing categories now fall into the single category of “whatever I do in word or deed;” and it all rests “under the [authority] of Jesus.” Col. 3:17. 

Nowadays, I don’t much know what any day is going to look like from moment to moment. I have default activities on my calendar, of course, but it is all flexible. The Holy Spirit knows better than me what meetings are critical for His plans, and which meetings can be moved. He knows better how much time it will take to finish the work He places in front of me. He knows how to multiply my time by giving me the gift of focus and clarity. He knows where the truly meaningful opportunities are in every aspect of my life. He knows what my family needs and when they need it. He knows when He will use me to encourage or exhort another person. He also knows when I need to be encouraged or exhorted and will place someone in my path to do it. He knows when I need rest, and He knows when I should just sit in silence because He wants to speak to me. He knows when He will use me to provide a miracle for another, and He knows when He will provide a miracle for me. He knows exactly how He is working through my life to build His Kingdom, and He will accomplish His purposes. None of His plans for me will be thwarted, and He will effectively use my time. So, I yield my time to Him to manage, and I just keep my heart’s eyes and ears open, listening and feeling His direction moment by moment. This is Abundant Life led by the Spirit. I highly recommend it!