I recently just read a book titled "The Elimination of Hurry" by John Mark Comer, a pastor in Portland, Oregon. I definitely recommend it. The main idea behind the book is fighting for the slow moments of life, especially when our culture is always about the busyness of life.
"Hey, how's it going?!" ::Response:: "It's going great! You know just busy!..."
This is a common response for a church planter or anyone in ministry. I'm definitely guilty of it. You've probably had this exact conversation before and given the same response. What's argued in this book is that busyness in our culture is prized as a positive thing rather than a negative thing. Until your body breaks down... What's interesting is that even though we have programmable coffee pots, machines to do our dishes, machines to wash our clothes, microwaves to cook our food, all this technology that life provides for us to MAKE more time, most of us actually feel like we have LESS time, not more.
Maybe your life is busy. You're have a full time job. You're a full time student. You're a full time parent. There's simply no time for anything because life is busy. What if you did an inventory of your life and you realized that you're actually not as busy as you think you are, you just haven't made the opportunities to SLOW DOWN in areas that you're able to slow down and set your attention on what's important?
I have a confession to make: I'm on my phone WAY TO MUCH. I know that I'm the only one that struggles with this. My phone has an awesome feature called Screen Time that tells me of the seriousness of my phone addiction problem. Just to give you some numbers from last seven days:
4h 55m : Average time on phone per day (if I sleep about 7-8 hours per night, which I probably don't... thats half of my day in bed or on my phone)
162 : this number is how many times I pick up my phone per day
There's reasons to justify these numbers but I'm not going to go that route
Challenge : Check Screen Time and see your numbers.
So I began to think, what are areas of my life that I can SLOW DOWN. On of my favorite quotes in the book was, "if you want to experience the life of Jesus you have to adopt the lifestyle of Jesus."
Jesus was a very busy person yet when we look at his life, he was rarely in a hurry. He was constantly hanging out with people, teaching people, healing people, surrounded by people, and yet he was never in a hurry. Multiple times he was in life or death situations (read Mark 5), yet he wasn't in a hurry.
How was he able to do operate that way? Jesus made it a point to regularly get up early and go to a quiet place to be with his Father. In other words, he constantly found moments to SLOW DOWN in the midst of the busyness.
This may sound silly, but my way of slowing down for the past several years has been Coffee. I promise it's not just for the cool pics and the likes on instagram. Once I started getting into Slow Pour coffee people would tell me, "I don't have time for that! Give me a K-Cup!..." But for me, more than the fact that slow pour coffee tastes 1,000x better than K Cup, what I deeply enjoyed was the process of making the coffee. It takes time. There are multiple steps. In those moments I didn't have my phone, it's always quiet, and it's so calming and peaceful. For me, it's the best way to start my morning. Then once the coffee is done, I sit, enjoy the coffee and spend time in God's Word.
When we SLOW DOWN, we sit and rest in God's presence and in God's Word because the only way we're going to adopt the lifestyle of Jesus is by diving into God's Word and reading about Jesus.
I know you're busy, we all are. But don't forget the importance of fighting for your spiritual health by way of slowing down. Challenge yourself to do one thing different this week that'll force you to slow down.
God has big plans for you in 2020. Find moments to slow down as you spend time communicating with God to know the direction that He desires for you.
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