Monday, June 5, 2017
Some things are not meant to be hurried. Watching a sunset is one of those things. Sharing a meal with someone is another. Around my house while growing up, it was often said, "Haste makes waste," and it does. Growing our spiritual life is certainly not something which happens in a hurry. Important things are more likely than not to take some time. Yet, we are so afflicted with our need for instant gratification and life in the fast lane that taking our foot off the pedal and slowing down is all but an impossibility. We just hurry through life getting things done!
When retirement came a few years ago, one of the things I wanted to do with whatever time remains in this final season of my life was to slow down and know the present moment part of each day. Even with such an intention, I have not been as successful as I could have been. It is no wonder I would underline a word given to John Ortberg by his spiritual mentor, Dallas Willard, when he wrote his book entitled, "Soul Keeping." Ortberg went to his mentor asking what he needed to do to stay spiritually healthy and was told, "Hurry is the great enemy of spiritual life in our day. You must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life." As I underlined these words, I was also saying, "Wow!"
What we figure is that there is some secret program or yet to be discovered strategy for spiritual growth and all we have to do is find it, read it, and put it into practice. Once discovered it should not take long to get it working. As we put down the book with the secret formula, we look at the clock and allow ourselves about fifteen minutes to get in and out of whatever spiritual discipline that is required for spiritual maturity. It is such an absurd illusion under which we live! Growing our faith toward spiritual maturity takes slow, deliberate, and unhurried work. Do it any other way and continue with spiritual frustration and mediocrity. Ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life and your practice of spiritual disciplines and a more satisfying life is guaranteed.