Adrian Rogers is quoted with the pithy statement, “If Satan cannot make you bad, he will make you busy.” There is much wisdom in the statement, as cluttered lives are typically not Christ-centered lives. The Lord encourages us to “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10). According to the Lord, there is a connection between being still and knowing Him. When we are continually busy, when we are always grinding out work, our awareness and awe for Him decreases.
Many church leaders have wisely encouraged people to slow down, not to sign up for every sport, and not to commit to every extracurricular activity. Ironically, and painfully so, is that many churches don’t follow their own counsel. So while many church leaders have bemoaned the busyness in their communities, they have failed to bemoan the busyness in their churches. Here are three major consequences of a busy church:
1. Families are pulled in many directions.
A busy church calendar inevitably pulls families in multiple directions. While preaching and advocating family dinners and family devotions, a busy church calendar can make living these out and attending all that is listed in the bulletin impossible.
2. Church people only know church people.
A busy church helps church people know more and more church people and systematically removes them from the broader community. In a busy church, people are removed from living as salt and light among people who don’t know the Lord.
3. Pastors become program managers.
In a busy church, pastors are asked to neglect equipping the body in exchange for running programs. In a busy church, equipping is replaced with entertaining through program after program.
Perhaps Adrian Rogers’s statement should be applied to the local church too. Church: If Satan cannot make you bad, he will make you busy.