There are times when I feel like I get no work done because the work I planned to do when I began the day gets pushed aside as a result of various interruptions. People come by to talk, the phone rings and somehow the day passes without “getting any work done.” My sense is this is not an uncommon reaction.
Joyce Little, in her book, The Church and Culture War, has an observation that is very helpful in those moments. She writes,
“What we fail to understand is that if [interruptions from our work to deal with the demands others make on us] are a waste of time, then Christ’s life was a waste of time. For when we read the Gospels attentively, we discover that the story of his life is one long sequence of interruptions. The blind Bartimaeus interrupts his departure from Jericho, a woman interrupts his dinner in the home of Simon, the leper, a centurion interrupts his entry into Capernaum, Jairus interrupts his meeting with the crowd, the woman with the hemorrhage interrupts his atttempts to get to Jairus’ daughter, his disciples interrupt virtually everything; even Mary interrupts his enjoyment of the wedding. The list could go on and on….Those were not interruptions, of course. Those were precisely the people he came to help, the thihgs he came to do. When so much of his work consisted of attending to those who interrupted him, why should we suppose our own lives to be any different?”
St. Vincent captured the same idea when he spoke of the need to “leave God for God.” It is good to be reminded of this need now and then.