Today’s Spiritual Food for Thought, first posted on March 13, 2015, is provided by Andy Kim who is an associate pastor at Radiance Christian Church in San Francisco. Andy is a graduate of Northwestern University (B.S.) and Fuller Theological Seminary (M.Div.).
Spiritual Food for Thought for the Weekend
“The Myth of Multi-Tasking”
2 Kings 17:24-33
And the king of Assyria brought people from Babylon, Cuthah, Avva, Hamath, and Sepharvaim, and placed them in the cities of Samaria instead of the people of Israel. And they took possession of Samaria and lived in its cities. 25 And at the beginning of their dwelling there, they did not fear the Lord. Therefore the Lord sent lions among them, which killed some of them. 26 So the king of Assyria was told, “The nations that you have carried away and placed in the cities of Samaria do not know the law of the god of the land. Therefore he has sent lions among them, and behold, they are killing them, because they do not know the law of the god of the land.” 27 Then the king of Assyria commanded, “Send there one of the priests whom you carried away from there, and let him go and dwell there and teach them the law of the god of the land.” 28 So one of the priests whom they had carried away from Samaria came and lived in Bethel and taught them how they should fear the Lord. 29 But every nation still made gods of its own and put them in the shrines of the high places that the Samaritans had made, every nation in the cities in which they lived. 30 The men of Babylon made Succoth-benoth, the men of Cuth made Nergal, the men of Hamath made Ashima, 31 and the Avvites made Nibhaz and Tartak; and the Sepharvites burned their children in the fire to Adrammelech and Anammelech, the gods of Sepharvaim. 32 They also feared the Lord and appointed from among themselves all sorts of people as priests of the high places, who sacrificed for them in the shrines of the high places. 33 So they feared the Lord but also served their own gods, after the manner of the nations from among whom they had been carried away.
There’s a good chance that as you are reading this QT (perhaps after having returned from church), you are in transit, planning out the rest of the day, preparing your next project, etc. Efficiency and productivity is life’s game and multi-tasking is the winning chip. However, recent studies have shown that multi-tasking is simply a myth that doesn’t exist. No matter the activities involved, multi-tasking has counter intuitive consequences such as losing focus, creativity, productivity, and time.
Today’s passage shows us the consequences of multi-tasking, or in the case of the pagan nations, “multi-worshipping.” Ironically, these pagan nations are brought into the land of God where they are taught to fear God. Rather than simply turning from their previous religious practices, they took the “best of both worlds” approach—they worshipped both their own gods while fearing God Himself. That’s like mixing gasoline and water; it is good for nothing.
Many of us take the same approach with God. We think that we can live for God while still living for many of our own desires. That’s like mixing gasoline and water as well; it is good for nothing. As long as our theology includes the fear of God and our apologetics prove His existence, we feel everything is okay—even though how we spend time and money indicates a divided heart. Just as the mind was not created to multi-task and focus on different activities, the heart was not made to love more than one God. In other words, we cannot follow both the world and God; to do both would rob us of fully experiencing God.
Let’s take some time to evaluate our own hearts. What are the areas that we still hold onto and put before God? At the root of multi-tasking is a fear of losing something. In the same way, many of us are scared to surrender some of the things we hold onto, having the fear of losing out. However, it is only when we fully surrender ourselves to God, can we fully experience His presence and faithfulness over our lives. Let’s stop following after things that bring temporary satisfaction; and let’s worship Christ who is the only One who can truly satisfy us.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I confess that my heart is divided and there are still things that I put before You. I repent of the areas that rob my devotion to You. As it says in Psalm 86:11, “Teach me your way, LORD, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.” Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Romans 13