Living the Life you Have, Slowing as a Spiritual Practice

Are you present in your current pace of life?

Different seasons, seem to bring a different tempo for the rhythm of our lives.  Rushing and hurrying can be symptoms of a disordered interior world, one that is disconnected from the reality of ones truest authentic desires.

Being present, aware of how one is feeling, keeping thoughts on the conversation at hand, and not planning mentally into next week when engaging in conversation are ways to begin intentionally slowing to live the life one has.

Busyness and being in a hurry can also be ways to avoid reflecting on what may be is disarray in the interior life.  A rested and refreshed soul seem to be counter-culture and a prerequisite for an ordered interior life in which one may authentically lead from being their truest selves.

As one becomes aware of tightness in the shoulders, taking breaks to just sit and be, or parenting or leading from the soul instead of merely the intellect are ways to begin engaging and celebrating the moment.

Even what seems to be the most bitter moments can be made beautiful by actually sitting with the unpleasant emotions and inviting Jesus into the situation to just be foe awhile, not trying to fix or come up with a solution, just merely being.

 

Slowing by example of a Canoe

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Imagine being in a secure canoe in the midst of a river, without paddles.  The river represents a peaceful and predictable current and timing of the seasons and God orchestrating the pace.  The absence of paddles symbolizing offering self-will and resting in God for the orchestration.  Our role in the journey is to focus not on the pace, but the one also inside the boat – Jesus, who is, unhurried.  He exudes peace instead of stress and is the perfect companion along the River of Life.  It is God who sets the pace of the current, with the purpose being on belonging with him.  The joy is in being with the company, fully present, fully engaged.  The place where contentment is found for solace for the soul.

 

Can you hear his invitation?  

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” – Matthew 11:28-30 (MSG)

 

“Come to me,” he says while pointing to the seat in the canoe just at the shoreline.

He’s waiting to set the unhurried pace in this season of life, allowing one to appreciate the rhythms of the ripples in the river, enjoying the rising and setting of the sun to its own melodious melody.

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 What is you body saying about the current pace?

How is the quality of your sleep and the tension in the shoulders?  When is the last time you stopped to pause and sense how your body was feeling?  Is it daily going past its margin?

 

Entering into the moment with joy and being completely present is also a way to give gratitude to God… communion requires a presence.

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We have the ability to set the pace to some extent with the sacred word, “no”. It’s in giving ourselves permission to use it that we can walk into a peaceful pace and accept the abundant life he promised, regardless of external circumstances.

 

Ways one could develop slowing as a spiritual practice in ones life: 

Pause and savor the moment. 

Begin to slow the pace of the interior life. 

Plan a margin between meetings or appointments to enjoy 5-10 minutes alone on a walk through creation or savoring your favorite cup of tea.

Go on an intentional retreat someplace quiet without a watch or phone.

Read a book slowly and savor the words.

Set the alarm earlier just to sit and read or just be silent with God in solitude.

Intentionally watch the summer sunset with some fresh squeezed lemonade.

3b333f63dcf932955d59fb823f2ecdf3Photos:  Pinterest

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