Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Hurry up and slow down

It's the times I most feel like I need to hurry up and get stuff done that I really need to slow down and breathe.  It seems counter-intuitive, and it probably is, but it's truth. At least in my life.  

I live in a state of busyness. I tend to be always going somewhere, doing something, meeting someone.  I'm busy. And most of the time, I like being busy. I feel more productive. I feel more focused.  

But then, the momentum builds and a few projects becomes a ton of projects.  And I feel further and further behind. And even when I check email a bazillion times a day, there are still more emails to answer and phone calls to return than I can even fathom.  

And so I go harder and faster and do more and stay later at work and don't take the necessary breaks. Because somehow I've convinced myself that I can actually get it all done if I just work harder.  Which, if you know anything about ministry (or just life in general?) is just plain laughable. Because you can never do it all. Never.  No matter who you are or how productive, for every call you make, there is another one looming. Maybe not one you have to make, but one you could or should make.  So, there you have it. You're behind. Again.  

Well, maybe not you. But me. Because that's how I look at it.  Critically. Like I can never do enough. I know it's not helpful and I know it's not healthy and on those rare occasions when I can slow down just enough, I can see that, but most of the time I just keep doing...

Well, this week I'm slowing down. I've schedule study days. Which also, as a consequence of always going, starts with slow down time where I lounge and nap, and sleep in and doddle because otherwise the studying feels like a punishment rather than a blessing.  

So, here I am writing, because that's what I get to do when I slow down.  And, as usual, all the burdens and unaccomplished tasks crash into my brain and my ego just enough to hurt. And long enough to remind me that I shouldn't only have this time every now and again, but weekly, with my regular sabbath days.  

It's my time to slow down. It's my time to think and pray and listen. To read and to write. And to hope that after 3 days of study time and a day of sabbath that my soul will feel renewed.

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