A few years ago, I read a quote that sent a shockwave through my life. In his book, Soulkeeping, author John Ortberg asked distinguished philosopher Dallas Willard how to stay healthy spiritually. Willard uttered a sentence that God used to radically change my life: “You must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.” (i)
On a scale of 1-10, how hurried is your life these days? Here are three possible reasons why we live hurried lives:
- We think that everyone needs us, but there are too many people and not enough time;
- We’re frustrated perfectionists and struggle to finish tasks;
- We’re high-capacity achievers, but we’re scattered and because our priorities aren’t clear.
I don’t know if any of those categories resonate with you, but at different phases of my life, I fell into all three categories.
How did I stop the insanity? First, let me say that I’m still recovering and it will likely always be that way. My practical tip is keep at least a one-hour gap between appointments or obligations on my calendar. This sounds so simple, but this has been a game-changer for big-time hurry girl like me. That hour buffer gives my life room to breathe, instead of panting from sun up to sundown. I can even drive at a regular speed across town instead of screaming at stop lights to hurry up and turn green. (Please don’t judge, I bet that you’ve done it, too.)
- Conviction. What is my role at home and work in this season of my life?
- Clarity. What are the things that only I can do at home or in my job?
- Creativity. What are the unique gifts and talents that I want/need to use in this season of life?
- Connection. Which relationships is God calling me to prioritize?
I hope that these two suggestions equip you to eliminate hurry so that you can slow down and savor God’s voice. You are so precious to Him!
*Portions excerpted from Winning the Worry Battle by Barbara L. Roose
(i) John Ortberg. Soulkeeping (Zondervan, Grand Rapids, MI 2014) 20.
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