Life moves fast.
Perhaps too fast. Sometimes so fast that it can almost feel like you’re missing out on living it.
When life becomes hurried – it actually begins to rob you of life.
So, what’s the alternative? Become a couch potato? Do nothing? Say ‘no’ to everyone?
Probably not. That’s not living either.
Is it possible to be busy, but not hurried?
Jesus seems to think so. I think that’s part of what he’s getting at in Matthew 11 – when he’s calling a hurried and anxious people to rest in him.
When we investigate his life and living – we see a busy life, but not a hurried existence. He actually lived an unhurried life and in doing so, his life made a lasting impact on others and was full to the brim of richness, significance and beauty.
In The Life You’ve Always Wanted book, John Ortberg has this quote that challenges me.
May it challenge you.
“It’s because it kills love that hurry is the greatest enemy of the spiritual life. Hurry lies behind much of the anger and frustration of modern life. Hurry prevents us from receiving love from the Father or giving it to His children. That’s why Jesus never hurried.” – John Ortberg
When we live ‘unhurried’ – we’re available to God. Available to notice others. Available to love. Available to help. Available to care. Available to pray. Available to respond. Available to receive.
Hurry robs us of Christ’s light burden and easy yoke.
Hurry leads to fatigue.
Hurry diminishes our ability to love.
Hurry can cloud are ability to notice divine appointments in life.
“If we are to follow Jesus, we must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from our lives.” -Dallas Willard
Read the encounter of Jesus and a women struggling in Luke 8 and see how he responded in the moment. Jesus was occupied by a task at hand, but this task never over-rode divine appointments with people. He was able to live in the moment of life and not be driven to get to the next agenda item. Jesus demonstrates that he has enough power to handle every moment, every circumstance and he promises to empower us in each one we face.
Living unhurried allows us the flexibility to savor moments of life and respond in moments of life – and not just try to get through them in order to arrive at number next.
Hurry just might be the biggest weapon Satan fires against Christians in our culture… (think about that)
So, how do we train to live an unhurried life in the midst of such a fast paced, sped-up culture?
What would it look like to practice slowing your speed of life? What would it look like to introduce solitude into your existing?
Here’s some simple suggestions to push back at the ‘hurried pace’ that wants to creep in and control our living: (add in others)
- drive in the slow lane for the next week – resist the urge to pass.
- for a month – eat slower, chew and savor.
- when at the grocery store, look for longest line and get in it.
- go through a day without your watch – maybe even your phone.
- plan some solitude time. Pull away, even 30 minutes to be with God.
- take 5 minutes and phone a friend to connect.
- start a “stop doing” list.
- when you ‘feel’ rushed – realize & tell yourself to slow down. catch your breathe and remind yourself that life rolls on and isn’t dependent on you rushing.
- take 5 minutes to stop, be still and listen to a worship song.
- keep practicing your few minutes a day of prayer time with God.
- eliminate the words “hurry up” from your vocabulary for awhile.
Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. -Mark 1:35
Jesus took “time-outs” in life. It was his time to connect with the ONE who stands outside of time and is never hurried. God is the only sovereign one and ultimately in control. You’re not. Nor am I.
If Jesus took time-outs, then we better use them. Jesus lived busy, but never lived hurried. Solitude fights against hurry sickness – It’s like Spiritual Vitamin C.
Jesus modeled too us the need to take time, to slow down, to create space and spend moments with the Father. Busyness leads to reactionary living, but when you live unhurried – it allows you to respond intentionally and lovingly.
We are a people that need to get reprogrammed to live for things of the Kingdom of God and not for the Kingdom of Things.
Are you out-pacing Jesus?
Just A Reminder: Jesus says to us, ‘follow me’, not the other way around.
“If we are to follow Jesus, we must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from our lives.” – Dallas Willard