A Quiet Moment Before A Frantic Pace

WORDS FROM W.W. November 1, 2010

This week begins a new experience for me. I’ve traditionally taken Monday as my day off, and gone back to the hyperness of another week Tuesday morning. In recent months I’ve found that Monday is not a slowing down day, but rather a day of hyperness that just happens to be around the house instead of at the church or hospital or wherever ministry is taking place. In other words, I’ve had difficulty slowing the engines. Finding quiet moments is more of a personal choice issue than a ministry or vocation issue. I too often choose to race by the slow zones of my day and come to the point of depletion by my own doing.
“Slowing down” is hard.
Last week I was in one of the big warehouse stores buying a 50 pound bag of popcorn seed (In case you’re wondering, it was for the church!). In front of me at a register was an elderly couple. After a few moments I knew this was going to be a time of “waiting”, but I stayed in the line. The elderly gentleman got his credit card out, but then realized it was his insurance card instead. He was confused, and I could tell he was a little embarrassed by his slowness in the transaction. He turned to me and said, “I’m sorry that I’m taking so long.” It was one of those God-moments that was pressing in on my spiritual oblivion. I had just been in a conversation the day before about slowing down with someone I mentor. I looked at the elderly gentleman and said, “No problem! Too many people in this world are in too much of a hurry.” (Myself included!) When he finished his transaction he turned to apologize to me again. I told him it was all right, and then said “I hope you have a great day.” He smiled at me in a way that said he needed to hear that.
Our weeks are often categorized as “A quiet moment before a frantic pace.” Soon the pace swallows the quiet moment and simply leaves us either restless or un-rested. My pace has invaded my writing time this past month. The repercussion of that is that my writing time is also a period of reflection for me. It gives me the opportunity to sit, ponder, meditate, write-delete-rewrite, think again, and come to that point where I sense a point of release and peace as I hit the “Send” button.
So tomorrow, as will be my Tuesdays for the coming weeks, the people that I serve as pastor are graciously allowing me to devote to writing, praying, and reflecting. It’s not that publishing companies will come clamoring to my door to discover the next Hemingway. I have no fantasies about ever publishing anything else. I simply am looking forward to pronounced quiet reflection with no deadlines. There are times that I sense there is something inside my being that needs to be verbalized on paper. It’s as if it is in me, but needs to be discovered. As a pastor, I look for the message that is within me each week. The Creator keeps creating in my spirit. I trust that he will now help me create some sense of some of the other life-stuff that roams around in my thoughts.

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One Comment on “A Quiet Moment Before A Frantic Pace”

  1. Laura Patterson Says:

    We were challenged a while back by our Pastor to take the slow lane and see what happens. So one night as I was running a quick trip to Meijer’s (our local grocery store), I saw a long line at the one register that had a real person at it and no lines at the self check out. I was tempted to take the quick lane but decided to wait in the long line. As it turned out, a high school classmate’s mother was ahead of me and we had the best time catching up on what was new. If I had taken the fast lane I would have gotten to bed sooner, but my life wouldn’t have been richer!


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