Busyness Can Turn To Wastefulness

Don’t pick too many tomatoes.

Perhaps it should be don’t plant too many tomatoes, and we are reminded of that every year about this time. Plants are yielding bumper crops, and many growers have no idea what to do with all of their tomatoes. Many often spoil and go to waste.

Nearly 50 years ago, while our aunt and uncle were on vacation, we were sent to pick tomatoes from their garden five blocks from our grocery store. We had four big, brown paper sacks with us to carry the tomatoes back downtown.

Ripe and rotted tomatoes overflowed the bags, when we had finished picking and started our return. The heavy fruit soon soaked through the sacks, and we had a real mess, trying to salvage anything. We’ll never forget that day.

It’s actually been the story of our life. Whatever we’ve attempted, seemingly, we’ve always gone overboard. We take on too much of a good thing. It started in the third grade when we worked ourself sick selling carnival tickets.

As a high school junior, we went head-over-heels trying to persuade everybody to buy magazine subscriptions. Same way with FFA and 4-H activities; we tried to be part of   everything, and were completely burned out by graduation.

College was more of the same as we trained for five judging teams, was a leader in two clubs, rodeoed, worked at home on days off, and took 21 hours a semester to graduate early without summer school. We were sick of college by that time, too.

In the “real world” 35 years, the trait continues. First, we got into the leather business, orders stacked up with that work until midnight nightly, and we were at our editor’s desk by 7 a.m. After awhile, we had too much and haven’t pounded leather since.

Our training endeavors expanded, so we were riding a dozen horses year round, with a full waiting list. Three catastrophes in seven years, and we’ve vouched “We’re going   to slow down.” That is until the phone rings, and somebody asks us to ride. We can’t refuse.

On top of this add our sales job, a cowherd, horse breeding, judging, teaching, writing,
announcing, stewarding, organization involvement and on and on. No denying it, we have too many irons in the fire and are too busy to get anything done. Maybe  someday we’ll learn to say “no” to ourself.

Warning comes in Ecclesiastes 5:3: “Too much activity gives you restless dreams.” Recommendations follow in Ecclesiastes 9:10: “Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might.”

Yet, it’s difficult to know exactly what to do as in Second Timothy 1:9: “Who hath saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works but according to His own purpose and grace.” Best to follow Colossians 3:1: “If ye then be risen with
Christ seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth, not on things on earth.”