At some Tesco stores, you can now keep fit and shop at the same time. New trolleys can be programmed to make them harder to push, raising the heartbeat and exercising muscles in the legs, arms and stomach. The trolley handle tells you how fast your heart is beating to make sure you don’t literally shop till you drop. Tesco are waiting to discover the public reaction before investing further in the new trolleys.
Killing two birds with one stone is a popular pastime today. It has even developed its own terminology – multi-tasking. Some learn, often of necessity, to do it extremely well but it does represent a trend which is a feature of our busy modern lifestyle. Trying to fit everything in, we get pulled in many different directions. We can lose ourselves in the plethora of different activities that occupy our days.
Jesus recommended that we focus on one thing in our lives – he said it should be to work for the kind of world God wants ¬– and everything else would follow. Having such a guiding purpose that motivates the wide variety of occupations we engage in can bring us a unity and more relaxed harmony.
Lent is a good time to affirm the fundamental focus of our lives. No doubt we will need to continue multi-tasking and maybe making time for reflection is among our routine tasks. But perhaps in these coming weeks, we might give some time to doing just one thing – reflecting on becoming the people and creating the world God wants. Such a use of this Lent will enable us to listen to our hearts, not just so we don’t keep going till we drop, but so that we connect again with what ultimately motivates us.
Read: Strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well (Matthew 6.33)
Rejoice: in the variety of tasks every day brings
Reflect: Am I using busy-ness to protect myself from any feelings that I might be more in touch with if I stopped?
Remember: that God recognises how hard it can be to get everything done and that it’s not the end of the world if I don’t.
Resolve: to live today noticing the ways in which the different things I do contribute to God’s work in the world.