“Caitlin, if you just slow down and then check your work before you finish, you would avoid almost all these mistakes,” my dad would say throughout middle school when we would review the mistakes on my math quizzes. I was naturally smart enough at math, but I did not do myself any favors when I would rush through to be done on homework, quizzes and tests. Always rushing to be done.
Ten years later and I still have not stopped rushing. Rushing through workouts, rushing through books, rushing through time with the Lord. It’s nothing short of a miracle that I have not gotten a speeding ticket (she says as she knocks on wood). There’s always one more thing I have to get to, or something I’m trying to cram in. The result is reflective of my middle school math quizzes – avoidable errors on not quite my best work. Lackluster performances in relationships, some days at work and in my ability to keep my living space clean.
When I slow down, I am able to give myself fully to the task in front of me, not calculating how quickly I can complete it and move onto the next thing. When I slow down, time with friends becomes more about them and less about checking something off my to-do list. When I slow down, I enjoy my work instead of viewing it as a means to an end. It takes grace for me to slow down. In slowing down, I admit that I am not above time, and that I am not in control. My humanity is demonstrated as items on my to-do list are left without being checked off. I have to trust God in order to slow myself down. I must relinquish control with every passing breath.
As my flesh shouts out, “Do more, just one more thing,” my spirit must learn to whisper back, “You do enough, you have enough, you are enough.” Shifting the priority from more to enough, from rushed to intentional. I cannot sprint a marathon, my pace needs to be slow and steady, one mile at a time, one task at a time, one day at a time.
When I seek God throughout the day, letting Him direct my priorities, the time I have becomes enough and I no longer yearn for just one more minute. Only a heart that is starting to let the truth of grace sink a little bit deeper can remain calm while running late and driving behind a car going under the speed limit. He gives greater grace.
Lord God, I want to slow down so that I can see you more clearly in the mundane moments of my life instead of whizzing past them onto more significant moment. You do not call me to sprint from one significant moment to another, but to walk with You, at your pace. May the pace at which I move reflect my belief in a God who holds it all together, not a woman grasping for control with every single breath. A frantic heart is not a heart full of grace. Build in me a heart of grace and a soul that trusts you enough to slow down. Amen.