If you're like me, then you are super busy and you find it really hard to budget all of your time wisely. You might also find that since you are constantly busy and you work very hard that you are also very lazy when you do have down time. When I don't have things planned I tend to veg. Sadly, my busy schedule and veg-itude have horrible side effects. The major side effect is that my relationships tend to fall through the cracks.
From a very early age, I neglected relationships in favor or having more time to do what I wanted or just out of pure laziness or because I didn't think that I was good enough or cool enough to hang out with anyone. I never learned how to maintain a lasting, viable friendship. I don't know how to really stay connected with people. I am on facebook so that I can "keep up" with my friends but I don't make an effort to check their status updates as often as I could. I have a phone so that people can get ahold of me at any time but I rarely pick it up and call people. How can I truly be connected?
Problems in maintaining my earthly relationships have also bled over into my relationship with God. Sadly, I have passed over God for a chance to play more Xbox 360. I have neglected to talk to God because I have too many things that I want to do. I don't take time to find out what God has to say. How can I truly be connected?
Let me just tell you that typing this all out has really put a few things into perspective. It has also helped me think through some of the issues here. I think that the solution is the same for the spiritual as it is for the physical.
#1 STOP being Selfish!
My laziness is selfish. Point blank. Boom! There I said it. I am also selfish in my relationships because I try for a little while and then quit when I feel like the other person isn't returning the friendship or giving me enough attention. Me. Me. ME! Selfish. Stop it!
#2 START listening.
Being involved with God and being involved with your friends and really taking time to stop and listen is the key to great two-way conversation. This is a skill that I need to practice more. I need to learn to listen wholeheartedly. When they are talking I shouldn't be thinking about what I am going to say next or my come back for the argument. I need to pay attention to what is being said. I need to start listening.
#3 COMMIT to being active.
Once I have listened, I need to be active in sharing. Sharing can be scary, especially if you have trust issues like I do. But without a response the conversation is one sided and nothing gets done. That doesn't mean I need to have the last word, but it does mean that I need to be open to letting someone else know me as I really am--flaws and all.
Take time today to STOP being selfish, START listening, and COMMIT to be active in the relationship. See if things don't start to improve. I'm going to try it and I hope you will too.