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Able is Useless Without Available

outLast week I put forward the idea of creating a culture of serving and giving. I then proposed some obstacles that might prevent  the acts of giving and serving.

The fear of your act of goodwill not being reciprocated. Also, the fear of not being able to reciprocate the deed yourself.

This started a discussion with a few comments over on my LinkedIn page, and I had another idea of what prevents people from giving.

Busy.

If you’re not busy, you’re not American. As of 2009, the average American works more hours per week than the average worker in Japan. We are obsessed with the business of busy-ness.

And it’s not just our jobs consuming so much of our lives these days. Generation X parents have their kids overloaded with activities from sports to gymnastics to violin lessons to karate. Generation Y is being smothered with their parents ambitious social schedules for them. It seems that kids rarely have time to be kids anymore as they are rushed from planned activity to planned activity.

Non-kids also tend to load their lives with activities. It used to be sports leagues and clubs. Then hobbies and television. Today it’s Call of Duty and World of Warcraft.

How does constantly being busy affect our generous and giving spirits?

  • Would you stop to help a motorist with a flat tire if you have just enough time to get to work without being late?
  • Would you stop to give directions to a pedestrian when you are already late for class?
  • Would you stop to give advice to an emotionally wounded adolescent crushed by their first heartbreak when your WOW raid starts in fifteen minutes?

If you answered “no” to any of these, then here’s a question for you: Is being busy a legitimate reason to avoid doing good?

“The enemy of all sorts of goodness and generosity and giving, is not greed. It is busy.” (Tweet this, it’s profound)

This is another enemy that my friends and I are looking to defeat when we launch our non-profit soon. To create a culture of giving and serving, one of the beasts that we are looking to defeat is busy.

I’ve heard many pastors and speakers say “God doesn’t always use the most able, but the most available.” What are your thoughts?

helpHow do we snap people out of their busy? How do we get people to disrupt their routines and habits and daily running on the hamster wheel, in order to be just a bit more mindful of others? To take time to notice when someone is in need? To take time to help, to give, to serve?

Please take a moment to share your ideas. If you have no ideas please share this blog post with others for their ideas.