Do Nothing—and Do It to the Glory of God

The Bible tells us, “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). I suggest there are times when we should do nothing—and do it “to the glory of God.”

One Sunday morning in my boyhood, I was waiting for my parents to finish dressing for church. “Hurry up,” I complained from the family room, “I don’t have anything else to do except sit here and think.”

Somehow, as soon as the words left my mouth, I knew I was going to get an answer I didn’t want to hear. Maybe that’s why I still remember my dad’s reply.

“Sometimes,” came his voice from down the hall, “it’s good to just sit and think.”

Unlike now, my life as an only child in a small, Mississippi River delta town in northeast Arkansas gave me many opportunities (besides waiting for my parents) to do nothing, to “just sit and think.” Back then I considered most of that inactive time to be boring. Now I realize that in many ways those moments were the making of me. Undistracted and unhurried, I could think about everything from how God could be everywhere at the same time, to how to throw a curveball. And since I heard or read much about God and the gospel in church, my home, and my daily Bible reading, thoughts about the things of God had the time to root deeply into the soil of my soul. I also had time for my imagination to work.

My occasional need to imitate Rodin’s statue, The Thinker, didn’t disappear with my childhood. If anything, my information-overloaded brain needs daydream breaks now more than ever. Yours probably does, too. So take time on occasion to do nothing—in the presence of God and to the glory of God. It will help simplify your spiritual life, for spirituality doesn’t get any simpler than doing nothing.

Photo by davitydave

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