Friday, August 16, 2013

The Gift of Slowing Down

It's not complicated.  Faster is better.

I hear this popular line from the ATT commercials several times a week, and each time, I fight the urge to agree.  I resonate with those cute children as they sit at the table making obvious statements about how slow is terrible and multitasking is wonderful, and I live in a culture that shouts much of the same:  Faster is better.

I live for fast.  I demand that my children be fast.

Eat your food faster.
Put on your shoes faster.
Get out the door faster.
Get through the check-out line faster.
Finish the bedtime routine faster.

We hurry through one thing only to rush through the next and at the end of the day we feel tired and productive and effective -- but better?  Is life really better when everything happens fast?

Because one, ten, fifty years from now, I won't remember the fast moments.

I won't care if we got to places on time, or I finished everything on my to-do list for the day.  I won't remember how quickly I finished grocery shopping or how much traffic there was on the freeway.

So much of our energy gets wasted on "fast moments" -- moments quickly forgotten by the day's end.

But I will remember the moments that lingered.

I will remember spending long hours by her hospital crib offering quiet prayers while she struggled to breathe, with nowhere to rush off to because nothing seemed quite as important.

I will remember the nights when I stayed to read her an extra bedtime book and cuddle for "just another minute."

I will remember the lingering kisses before he walked out the door, even though he was late for his 9am with the gas tank on empty.

I will remember the nights when we sat 'round the dinner table with friends until the sun set and yawns emerged from lips, and we repeated "we really should get going" at least 10 times before we finally walked to our car.

I will remember the 2am rocking with a coughing child who needed mama's touch and for once I wasn't in a hurry to climb back under my own covers.

I will remember allowing her to put on her own shoes, knowing it would take twice as long, and seeing her beam with delight as she proudly announced, "I did it myself, mommy!"

I will remember the moments that could have been rushed, but for whatever reason, weren't.  Because sometimes the slow moments speak to us the grace of God.

Perhaps ATT has it backwards.

Perhaps real life happens when we stop rushing around and start looking around.  When we thank God for the right here, right now, gifts that he's given us, rather than racing through life to experience the next one.

Faster isn't better.
Enjoying is better.
Knowing the Creator and His gifts is best.

Slow down.  Thank God for the gift of right now.


  1. Amen! :) Thanks for sharing Megan! These are the same things the Lord has been showing us too. :)

  2. Resonates with me too...we fight against our culture every minute in this regard!! You know a friend of my mom's told me last week " if you could describe Jesus in one word, what would it be." Her answer? RELAXED. Amen to that!