Saturday, December 27, 2008

Hurry Up and Slow Down!

Christmas Eve - 2008

Happy Christmas Eve to everyone! I was thinking how ironic it is that we spend so much time looking forward to Christmas, and then it goes by so fast! The ‘Countdown to Christmas’ begins unseasonably early every year, too. (Decorations in October? Even before Halloween?!)

And then...the big day arrives, and after the buzz and excitement of opening gifts is past, we’re thinking of our travel back home or the wrapping paper that needs to be discarded of somehow, or about New Year’s and our resolutions and whether or not we’ll be able to keep them. We’re always living with our minds set on the future! (Sometimes even trying to live IN the future!) Isn’t that kind of ironic? No matter what we’ve looked forward to, when we’re there, we’re thinking about the next thing!

In October, we got the chance to see Sarah Palin speak at a campaign rally. It was something we’d really anticipated, and we stood pressed up again the platform for close to three hours (or was it more?), waiting for her to come out. Then, when she finally did, I found myself wondering how long her speech would last, how long it would take us to find our way out of the crowded arena, if we could find our vehicle once we did, how long it would take to get out of traffic, if we could find a place to get something to eat on the trip home, and what time we would end up getting to bed that night. (And not because I have ADHD either! I don’t!)

It just truly amazes me how we are rarely ‘in’ the present. So many things I’ve not enjoyed, simply because I was already dreaming about what came next. On my daily schedule, I printed out Matthew 6:34 that says, “Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself!” I’ve learned that even if we’re not wringing our hands and worrying about tomorrow, per se...it still is lessening our enthusiasm and effectiveness for TODAY because we’re dwelling on the next thing TOO much. We don’t need to worry about it! Any of these things! ...“About what you will eat or drink, or what you will put on for clothes”... When we refuse to be in the present, we end up being pretty ineffective in the future too.

Why can’t we slow down enough to enjoy the present...to its fullest? I wonder what our lives would be like if we did. Maybe there’s a way I can find out! Maybe I’ll try it this Christmas. Oh wait...that’s not until tomorrow, is it! :-)

4 comments:

JD said...

This was an excellent article!

Nathan Jones said...

"When we refuse to be in the present, we end up being pretty ineffective in the future too."

I really like this line! SO true!

Anonymous said...

Umm, yeah. This is good

Randy said...

I enjoyed your thoughts on this as we are far too little engaged in the present.