Was it just one week ago? It feels much longer.
I can still hear the Pacific waves crashing to shore. I can still feel the warmth of the sun and the cool of the breeze. And I can still sense the comfort of being tucked next to my soul mate’s side, the heaviness of his arm about my shoulders.
Just seven days ago, I had a few hours of unhurried bliss.
We were in Carlsbad, California, for the Carlsbad 5000 road race series. After the Hubster ran the masters’ race, we found a bench along the race route that overlooked the ocean. For the next few hours, our souls were filled by the grandeur of creation as we cheered on runners in the other races and made friends with the wildlife.
With no schedule and no other place to be, we sat in peace, our hearts at rest. I thought this Sabbath experience would have made a good example for Ann Kroeker’s Not So Fast: Slow-Down Solutions for Frenzied Families, which is this month’s read for The High Calling book club. I had just finished reading the assignment for the next day’s discussion; I planned to mention this firsthand Slow Zone experience.
Then a funny thing happened. Monday was our travel day. The alarm disrupted our slumber at 3:30. In the morning. We were in the car by 4:00, to San Diego airport by 5:00, through security by 5:45 for our 6:40 flight. But weather in Chicago meant a delay of 45 minutes. Then another 15. The tailwind pushed us all the way to Chicago, but we were still more than an hour later than expected. The two-hour drive went as expected, but it was dinnertime when we got home—time for groceries. Then dinner, then laundry, then checking in on work . . .
And that’s when I remembered it was book club day. I had been going too fast to finish my post.
This too would make a good example for Ann’s book. I was too busy to write a post about not being busy. sigh.
And the rest of my week wasn’t much better. As I pressed on in the reading for this week’s discussion, so many things that Ann shared met me right where I was, in the fast lane:
“We have a slow and steady Savior meeting up with our own frenzied selves.” (107)
“Intimate relationships generally don’t flourish without some dedicated time one-on-one. They need slow moments of focus and attention.” (117)
“We routinely deny this fact (that God made us with limits) and load our lives to capacity, sailing off as if all is normal and safe, denying the nagging feeling that we’re on the brink of going under.” (125)
Ann is reminding me that the Lord Jesus walked in the sort of internal Sabbath rest that allowed for intimate relationships with His Father and His friends. Jesus was unruffled even as He met the needs of thousands—even as He left thousands unhealed, untouched, in want. Jesus didn’t do everything, but He did everything His Father asked of Him.
Disciples follow in the footsteps of their teacher. As a disciple of Jesus, I am to walk as He walked—at rest and in intimate communion with my Father and my loved ones; and if I do all my Father asks of me I don’t have to worry about all that’s left undone.
That was my experience on that ocean-side bench seven days ago. Life can’t always be that slow, but I want my insides to be slow like that regardless of the pace of the world around me.
Want to join me? Grab a book and dig in, then come every Monday to join the discussion at The High Calling. Next week: Chapters 12–15.