Wednesday, June 26, 2013

DON'T BE IN A HURRY: Article for last week's Hot Springs Star

Don’t Be In Such A Hurry….
My daughters turned one and three in the last month. They are so beautiful. And I adore them. They are often, in many ways, eager to grow up as quickly as they can. Our oldest is excited for preschool and Vacation Bible School. Our youngest daughter is trying to climb up and over everything in sight, and wants to do everything her big sister does. These days, I try to help my oldest with something I usually assist her with, and she insists she can do it. Maturation is a healthy thing, but sometimes I want to say, “Hey little girls, you don’t have to be in such a hurry to grow up!”

The truth is, all of us hurry just a little bit too much. We are anxious to get the toys we need, and so we spend money we don’t have to get them now. We schedule and our families so we don’t have a spare minute, and then brag and pat ourselves on the back about how busy we are. We get in a rush to make everyone happy and do everything everyone wants us to, and then drain our energy and our souls in the process. We get way too anxious about too many things. We get trapped in what author Gordon McDonald calls “the tyranny of the urgent.”

It is interesting to note that although Jesus was clear about what his mission was, he was never in a hurry. He was not lazy. Neither, though, was he frantically flitting from one thing to the next. Some time people tried to hurry him up to get to the item on their agenda. He still went at his own pace, loving, serving, and caring for people as the Spirit led him to. He stopped to help a woman while he was on a way to heal a sick girl. He takes time to teach his disciples while they are journeying to see a dying friend. Jesus rose on the third day…not the third hour. Even in resurrection, he kept a consistent even pace.

I think we all need to slow down a little bit. St. Vincent de Paul says, “One who hurries delays the things of God.” The rushed anxiety that hurry creates makes us less effective in accomplishing the goals we want to accomplish. It also makes us more irratible, less grateful, and more difficult to live with. We need to remember that love is patient, and that one of the fruit of the Spirit’s work in our life is growth in patience. God brings about good things in his good time.

So, let us take a minute to take a deep breath. Let us work hard. But let us take times for rest, for preparation, for thought, and for truly savoring our lives. Let us live with the love, joy, patience, and peace that the Scripture promises for those who walk in the way of Jesus.

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