Slow it down

Disclaimer
If you already do everything slowly, don’t read. Procrastinators or perfectionists might need to hear: “Hurry up already!”

Not everybody needs this advice.
I post it on my dresser periodically.

do-it-slow

Because I need it.
I like speed.
Efficiency.
Get this done so I can move on to that.

Especially if it’s something unpleasant. If I go as fast as possible, I’ll have more time for fun things.

But that can work against me. And against you.

Because if you need to talk to me during the time I’ve set aside for something else, you become a distraction.

And I don’t want to see you as a distraction.
I want you to see you as a blessing.

Not that schedules and efficiency are bad things. They’re not. In many ways they make smoother relationships possible.

But I need to think twice about what I’m being efficient about. And why.
Some things don’t call for efficiency.
They call for attentiveness.

Schedules aren’t boss.
God is.
And if God is saying, “Slow this life down,” then I need to hit the brakes.

  • So instead of rushing through the grocery store, I want to stop for friends I run into.
  • Instead of feeling irritated about midnight awakenings, I want to be grateful for more time alone with God.
  • And instead of wishing someone would finish telling their story more quickly, I want to gift them with time to hear their heart.

I want to see interruptions as invitations, not as irritations.

To be aware. To pay attention. To relate.

Slowly.

slow-it-down

* * *

What reminds you to slow down? Please share.

revised from the archives

17 thoughts on “Slow it down

  1. [email protected]

    And these words, ‘I want to see interruptions as invitations, not as irritations,’ dear Lisa, need to be kept front and center permanently around here. The bright yellow paper? A cool caution waving in the breeze.

    I like this … I need this!

    Have a good one …

  2. jdukeslee

    I’m on the back side of a very fast-paced month, and finally feel like I can slow down a little bit, and catch my breath. Your post is so timely for me, Lisa, as I try to get back to a normal state of living. Love to you.

  3. Brooke Espinoza

    Great message, Lisa! God was just speaking to my heart that lately I’ve been more of a Martha, than a Mary. It’s time to slow things down, focus on what’s truly important and trust that God will help me get the rest done in His perfect time. Blessings to you!

  4. floyd

    Awesome quote, Lisa. Man oh man, am I guilty. I see only things that need to be crossed off a list, physically or mentally. Not a pretty trait. I am convicted. Good word, sister. Living isn’t about lists, it’s about interacting and caring about the other souls that walk the path with us. So easy to forget…

  5. Melissa

    So true, Lisa. It reminds me of when my son was little. Every single time I started to vacuum, I’d hear “Mommy!” It was frustrating at the time, but yeah, he’s a much higher priority than a clean carpet.

  6. TC Avey

    Powerful message and just what I needed to hear! I tend to go “full speed ahead”. And while I must be about my Father’s business, Jesus was never too busy or going to fast to see those in need around Him and respond.

  7. Trudy

    Beautiful perspective, Lisa. Even though chronic illness forces me to slow down, I still need to hear this, because my mind can still be going lickety-split and not be as attentive as it should be. I also need to see this illness not as an irritating interruption but as a blessing in disguise to spend more time alone with God. Thank you, Lisa.

  8. Renee

    Oh….so true…when we are in a hurry others can become a distraction. I have been guilty of also not truly listening to what someone is saying because I’m forming in my mind what I’m going to say. :(. Great post Lisa

  9. Sherrey Meyer

    Lisa, so true! What slows me down? Usually a clear message from God through a life change, a health issue, sheer tiredness from going too fast, or my dear husband who can take life slower than molasses oozing from the jar. He has been such a visual blessing in my life. God’s gift to an overachieving wife who is also a perfectionist! What a combination we are. 🙂

  10. Barbara H.

    We are very much alike in this aspect. 🙂

    Probably the most inspiring thing to me in regard to interruptions was when I saw for the first time that Jesus healed the woman with the 12-year issue of blood while on the way to heal Jairus’ daughter. I can just imagine how Jairus felt at this delay when his own daughter was ailing, and then when he got word that his daughter had actually died. Then Jesus came and raised her from the dead. The interruption was as much God’s will that day as raising Jairus’ daughter. I so often have to remind myself that my day and my schedule are His to order. I do still bristle at interruptions, but try to remind myself that He is in control and whatever is going on is what He wants me to do right now. And I have to admit that so often that irritation or bristling comes down to not being able to do what *I* wanted to do when *I* wanted to do it. Sigh. Thankfully He is still working on me. 🙂

  11. Cherry

    Lisa, I sure do identify with what you wrote – I like to be efficient, and can miss the joys of the little things because I often am in such a hurry. Thanks for this … “Schedules aren’t boss. God is.” So true, and something we need to be reminded of often, I think. Blessings!

  12. Susan Nowell @ My Place to Yours

    “Some things don’t call for efficiency. They call for attentiveness.” Well said! God gave me a wake-up call a couple of years ago and helped me learn to truly pay attention to people around me. You know… the “invisible” people so easily overlooked on our way to something important. I’m still learning to slow down, but I’m so grateful for the ongoing practice. Thank you for the reminder!

  13. Krista

    I see that we are a lot alike Lisa 😉
    I tend to rush “get this done so I can move on to that” YES!! I find myself unintentionally tapping my foot while I wait on my son to get his teeth brushed, bag packed etc… embarrassingly I’ve had to sit on my hands as to not do it for him (just so we can get moving on).

    I’m trying… working on slowing down because life really is too precious and fleeting.

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