The worries of the age and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful. -- Jesus, explanation of the parable of sowerMost of the people that I know have overcrowded schedules. We hardly know what to do with rest, peace, and quiet. We insist on doing too much. In the process we lose our potency and vigor, becoming restless and listless, harrassed by our own schedules. Our overcrowded lives are poor ground for God's word to grow. We would serve this way, we would serve that way, if only we had time. But we continue to schedule things so that we do not have time. An overcrowded life is a hindrance to serving God and growing in his word. In the parable of the sower, an overcrowded life is right behind the devil and apostasy on the list of things that keep the seed from bearing fruit (now that's a scary thought); it chokes the growth of God's word. I've heard pastors preach on the deceitfulness of wealth, but rarely on the life-choking multitude of worries and cares.
We are very fond of work, just as we are very fond of money. But work can be deceitful too. Money deceives us into thinking it's worth more than it really is; work deceives us into thinking the world depends on our unceasing efforts. That's one of the lessons of the Sabbath: the world really does go on if we take a little time off; it really was complete and self-sustaining at creation. Our excessive work doesn't accomplish nearly as much as we imagine it does. A good shepherd makes us lie down in green pastures; he leads us beside quiet waters. He restores our soul.
As for us, I'm sure we look harrassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. An overcrowded life is a hindrance to experiencing God's blessings of peace and rest.