Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Befriending Slow

So many of the lessons I need to learn revolve around knowing my limits. Paring down. Taking a step, and not a leap. I'm a big thinker. I was raised that way. If you're going to produce something, don't think about making 10 of them. Why not make 10,000? If you're going to take a trip, why not Europe? Figure it out. Nothing's impossible. If you have a problem, talk to the manager. Write to the CEO. Nothing is out of range. In elementary school, my little brother left his new tennis shoes within the territory of our new puppy, who joyfully shredded them. My brother's "consequence" was having to hand write a letter to the president of the shoe company and explain his dilemma. He was sent a new pair. And he still has the letter.

OK. Thinking big is great for a lot of reasons. And I teach my kids along similar lines when appropriate. God is big too, and He loves big. Big surprises, miracles, rescues. And I love that about Him. I need that about Him.

However, some of the most important things in life require very, very small steps and careful attention to detail. Caring for a baby. Improving a relationship. Learning a skill, or breaking a habit. Yes, sometimes, these things enjoy sudden leaps forward. But generally, growth moves at an almost imperceptible pace. This is my challenge most days.

And this is a photo of two of my people on skis for the first time, last month. See the sign? SLOW. I kind of hate slow (and I just added the "kind of" because it sounds less horrible). But if I were 4 years old, wearing slippery boards on my feet, and on snow, I would love slow. I'd be content moving inches at a time, and I'd feel the greatest success simply from not falling. These little guys are not at all concerned with speed, only making it from point A to point B.

I really want that perspective right now. It's so easy to feel discontent with the slowness of my life. All the things I haven't tackled and all the places I'm NOT yet are truly relentless in their assault against me. Nearly all of the time, it doesn't appear that I'm doing anything "big". Tonight I'm choosing to be content with the small successes of the day. For my own edification, here are some of them:

I purchased, prepared and fed my people good food.
I did two loads of laundry.
I made my bed and did a decent job of tidying everywhere else.
I gave two apologies, and received two also.
I kissed and hugged my people a lot.
I stood outside with my kids just to smell the rain, and got a little wet.
I allowed for toy chaos to happen.
I came up with a plan for preparing my daughter for an upcoming test.
I edited some new photos.
I listened to my son read me a book...very, very slowly.
I listened to my husband's frustrations.
I listened to the rain.
I listened to my heart, wrote this post, and befriended "slow."

If you take time to think through the little and the slow and the teeny bits of your days, you see how big it all really is. List them today. You'll see. There is nothing insignificant about the amazing life God has given me, and the person He enables me to be. He is present, He is working, and He loves writing my story, one teeny bit at a time.

1 comment:

  1. Liked by - Dave, Bridge, Mary - Some of your extended people