05 Sep
Slow Living

Our goal with Lectio in Life is to learn to devotionally “read” our lives for glimpses of the Divine. God’s goal from the beginning of time has been to get humanity to a place of intimate and constant dwelling with his Presence. We believe God is present in all times and places and wants to communicate and commune with us.

Our culture puts a lot of pressure on achievements, fast paced endeavors, and obvious benchmarks. These things are attractive because they often earn us affirmation and encouragement. But Jesus taught the way of the kingdom in meekness, quiet, and unimpressive means. He developed relationships, served, and let the Father shape his time and direction. 

There’s a verse in Isaiah that says, “in returning and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength” (Is 30:15). The Israelites didn’t get this right either—so I’m really not bashing our culture—just pointing out a universal difficulty we have as humans: sitting still is hard, and staying still is nearly impossible. And yet, stillness is the way of rooted growth. It takes patience and has very little to do with us (as the plant). It requires trust in the environment and the farmer (God) for the things we need to grow.

These thoughts surface after a long weekend spent in relationship, service, and mundane home-care tasks. I hoped I would feel energized and full of initiative to tackle some big achievements today… But instead, I woke to dense fog and a body begging for slowness and self-care. In these moments I tend to default to an assumption that God’s not going to show up with intensity—and I am gratefully humbled by his outpouring of grace and obvious Presence in spite of me.

Jesus tells this parable that brings me comfort on slow days: “He also said, “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man scatters seed on the ground. Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts and grows, though he does not know how. All by itself the soil produces grain—first the stalk, then the head, then the full kernel in the head. As soon as the grain is ripe, he puts the sickle to it, because the harvest has come.” (Mark‬ ‭4‬:‭26‬-‭29‬)

All by itself. The soil produces.

Not by might, nor by power. (Zech 4:6)

God is faithful. He is growing and nurturing something in you and in your life that only he can bring to fruition. So relax… and enjoy that snuggly child, pet, or fleecy blanket without self criticism or shame.

(Oh! And the honey picture—that’s to represent the fruit of our lives God produces through the mundane and day to day faithfulness we exhibit, pretty much without our help or energy. Wonder of wonders. Grace upon grace. Our little apiary exploded with sweet liquid gold this year and reaping the harvest is such overwhelming joy and evidence of a mighty Creator’s blessed hand and wonder-full plan.)

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