Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Book Review: Crazy Busy By Kevin DeYoung

“So much to do, so little time” is a sentiment that resonates with many of us because increasingly, it appears our duties and responsibilities are piling by the minute. Let’s face it; ‘busyness’ is the oft cited off the cuff excuse for our failure to perform a task.

One would think that with all the influx of easily accessible information and all our technological advancements and breakthroughs, our lives would be less frantic and less hurried, yet the converse appears to be the prevailing status quo. In fact, there are times that we absent mindedly wished there were more hours than the 24 in a day to enable us do just a little bit more. It makes one wonder, why is modern man so beset with busyness? Why does it feel like there is never enough time? Why are we so busy?
Thankfully Kevin DeYoung recognizes these tough questions and attempt to address them in his aptly titled book, Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book about a (Really) Big Problem, and that’s what it really is, a BIG problem.

In this book, DeYoung offers readers a goodly dose of godly and theologically sound counsel with a healthy mix of common sense on how to deal with this canker of busyness. He shares his observations not as an indifferent bystander but as one who has had (and is still having) a firsthand experience of the effects of busyness, yet does so in a manner unlike your typical self-help books with their slick ’20 Ways’ or ‘7 Steps’ howtos.

In an era where it is usually deemed condescending for one to opine on a topic one hasn’t personally experienced, readers will find the author’s tone refreshingly personal and down-to-earth, one that anyone can well identify with for if anyone knows and have felt the overwhelming pull of busyness, DeYoung surely qualifies as one. He is a husband and father of five, a senior pastor, a prolific author and blogger and also currently pursuing a doctoral program. With each category cited above having its own accompanying challenges, he’s definitely got his plate full. Little wonder he readily admits that “more than any other book I’ve worked on, this one is for me.”

Crazy Busy examines the various forms busyness take in our lives while stealthily gnawing at the joys we have and proffer sound counsel on how to deal with them. Indeed, the author is right when he observed that “when our lives are frantic and frenzied, we are more prone to anxiety, resentment, impatience and irritability” which invariably affect those closest and dearest to us. Perhaps DeYoung may have been right when he asserted, “busyness kills more Christians than bullets.”

With mothers for instance, it looks like the house never stays clean. The dishes and laundry never seem to be done. The kids always needing our constant attention and especially the infant who never seems to stop crying and for the life of you cannot figure out what is wrong with her. And oh, you also gotta help the kids finish their homework. Then there is also that recipe that everyone is talking about which for some unknown reason you haven’t been able to add to your menu. And then there are Facebook friends and Twitter trends to catch up with…and on and on it goes seemingly ad infinitum until the point of despair when you begin to feel like you’re spiraling to your doom. These are more than enough triggers to make anybody go crazy. I agree with DeYoung that “busyness can ruin our joy.”

The bottom line is, we all have targets to meet and deadlines to beat and with our existing  state of affairs, it looks like busyness is here to stay but thankfully we have such useful tools like Crazy Busy to help us navigate those rough times before we are sucked into its resultant abyss of despair.

Readers will certainly find Crazy Busy immensely helpful. The question though is; will they make time out of their busy schedules to actually read it? I can only hope they do! 

No comments:

Post a Comment