Slow: What We Need When Life Goes Crazy

Sunlight on waves

+Jeanne Takenaka @JeanneTakenaka

Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—SLOW. This largely unedited “rough draft” form of writing stretches this perfectionist, in the best of ways. I write for five minutes on a given topic. If you’re interested in learning more about 5-Minute Fridays, check out our hostess, Kate Motaung’s site. Or, click on the link at the bottom of this post. As you read my simpler Friday posts, I hope you’ll join in the conversation!

SLOW

These past thirty days have held constant motion. Frenetic, Unstopping. Stress.

After hubs left on his last trip in January, I discovered our son needed surgery. I already had a surgery scheduled for me. The other son was working on a National History Day project . . . with lots of prodding from mama.

So many unexpected things coming up, sapping my energy. My focus.

Sleep wasn’t coming.

Stress.

Even since hubs has gotten back, it’s been surgeries, follow up appointments, and dealing with illness. Unexpected things happening that needed to be handled.

Those things needing to be dealt with have stolen my margin time. Time I normally use to replenish my soul.

And here I am, near the end of February, hungering for a little bit of slow.

I yearn to slow down the frenetic pace of life. To simply breathe in a day that has nothing planned outside the four walls of my home.

The freedom to let down and lean into Jesus’ presence.

Destin waves in sun

 

God didn’t create us to run on crazy all the time. There are seasons, but it shouldn’t become a lifestyle.

My crazy hasn’t become a lifestyle yet. And my crazy is calm compared to some, I know this.

I’m seeing the need to rebuild margin into my days . . .

. . . To give myself permission to do the things I enjoy.

Even at the expense of getting something ‘urgent’ done.

God encourages us to remember that He’s got this. He’s got a handle on everything that’s happening in my life. Our lives.

He’s not taken by surprise when unexpected things pop into our days.

He’s not sitting in shock and worrying about how these situations will be handled.

He’s encouraging us to look to Him and to remember that we can be still. We can come into his presence, be still, and remember that He is indeed God.

psalm-46-10-copy

 

He wants us to invite Him into the crazy. To listen to His guidance.

To do this, we must slow down a little so we can hear His voice.

What about you? When you’re running in the crazy-mode, how do you slow down? What’s been the biggest help for you when you’re in a crazy season?

Click to Tweet: God didn’t create us to run crazy all the time

I’m linking up with Kate Motaung’s Heading Home Five Minute Friday—Slow

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24 thoughts on “Slow: What We Need When Life Goes Crazy

  1. I have my quiet time in the mornings before anyone else gets up. Even if it’s just 10 minutes with God, I have to have it. I crave it. I don’t know if that will work for you, but I hope your find it before the season turns into a lifestyle.

    Hugs,
    Melinda
    (visiting from FMF)

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    • You’re so right, Melinda. That quiet time with the Lord is KEY. I usually get some time with Him daily, but it’s usually after I take the kids to school. I’m trying to re-establish an early morning quiet time before they get up (and it’s about o’dark thirty). I love that time with Him. Thanks for your reminder of how important this is!!

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  2. Yes! We are so not good at slowing down, are we? I love the concept of margin. A former colleague and friend taught me about building margin in my life. Hoping you find time to just be this weekend. I’m in the 6 spot this week.

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    • Tara, it’s HARD to slow down when I’m used to running at a certain pace. But it’s oh, so important. And I need to get back to where there’s more margin. Hopefully now that things are calming down in our family, this might become reality again. 🙂

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  3. I hope your son is doing better! My boy also had surgery a few months ago and I was high-strung, stressed, and worried. No slow there for me either. But you’re right He wants us ” to look to Him to remember and be still.”

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    • Thank you, Bonnie. I’ve been thanking God he has had no pain since his surgery. None! Knowing our kids have to have surgery just unsettles us on the inside, doesn’t it? I hope your son is doing better now! May we both continue to grow in the discipline of looking to Jesus and being still before Him. 🙂

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    • I love that, Michelle. Remembering God doesn’t need our help for Him to be great. He already is! And sometimes it’s hard to do what He asks of us, isn’t it? Yet, when we step out in obedience He meets us there. Thank you so much for stopping by!

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    • Andrew, I think any kind of change that affects how we’re used to living life is hard. I can understand the resentment at such a drastic change. You’re right, acceptance is a process. I’m continuing to pray for you, friend.

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  4. He’s got this!! I need to remember this, often! I often think that somehow God can’t do things without me. I’m learning to stop, to let others work, to do what I can, but to do it from a place of rest. Thanks for this reminder today, Jeanne!

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    • Annie, I have to get better about remembering this too. He stopped me this week and reminded me of precisely this. I need to stop looking at my shoes and the next steps I perceive I need to take, and instead anticipate what God wants to do, look to Him and trust. Doing things from a place of rest is a good practice, Annie!

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  5. Amen! I’m reading Shelly Miller’s book #RhythmsOfRest right now and it echoes the importance of the intentional slowing down so we don’t miss what He has for us, for our spiritual and physical health. Praying everyone is recovering well from your surgeries and that God opens up real rest for you! G;ad to be your neighbour at #fmf… waving from #40 today 🙂

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    • Christine, that sounds like a good book. My One Word for the year is Intentional, and this slowing down is so important for our well-being and for hearing God more clearly. We are recovering, thankfully. Thank you for the hope for rest. I’m hoping I get some more than I’ve been getting. I so appreciate you stopping by!

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  6. Time with God each morning and exercise keep me sane. I’ve discovered that it’s better to loose sleep so that I can have those two things than to sleep in and miss them. I often go to bed at 7:30 on Friday nights ;).

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    • Those are both good things, Anita! I’ve been pretty disciplined about spending at least some time with God almost every day. Exercise? Well . . . let’s just say that this is one area the Lord has told me I need to grow in being more intentional this year. 🙂 I admire people who have it as an established part of their lifestyles. Wow, 7:30?! You’re amazing. I can’t go to bed that early. Ever. 😉

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  7. Jeanne, I too am learning to give myself permission to slow down and enjoy. It’s so tempting to feel that the roof will cave in if I’m not micromanaging the activity in my family. I am thankful for the reminder to “Be Still.” You are right that God is not surprised by the unexpected. So why should we feel we need to take it on?

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    • I agree, Stephanie. There’s a part of me that likes being in the know with the events of my family. As our boys grow, I’m discovering I can’t be the micromanager I’ve been in the past. If I can live in that truth, I think (I hope!) these teen years will be a little easier to navigate. Let’s both work to lean into God in our roles as moms and “family administrators.”

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  8. Sometimes I’ll take a drive, or just take a different route than normal so I can experience a pretty part of town, when life gets a bit chaotic. It helps bring me back to the present, and helps me feel like I’ve taken care of my needs of seeing nature, and experiencing a mini adventure. May you have many breathing moments experiencing His calm and peace!

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    • Lynn, I love driving. Especially when I’m going through less “civilized” areas, there’s something that enables me to just breathe. I think maybe I need to do this more often. 😉 I’m with you. Seeing nature and having a mini-adventure are often great ways to recalibrate and slow down.

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  9. Oh beautiful, Jeanne. Can I just say that, not only do your posts contain scads of wisdom and inspiration, but I seriously love the pictures. I found myself pausing regularly just to look, and breathe. Well done! Did you take them? Is that where you live?
    I’m in 26 this week, and I wrote about being Empty and what to do about it (especially for those in leadership) . This season is ridiculously crazy for us, which explains why I wanna go back and look at your pictures again! 😂
    Have a great week! Shauna Blaak

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    • Shauna, you are such an encourager! In answer to your question, yes I take almost all of my own pictures. I’ve fallen in love with photography, especially in the past few years. 🙂 I’m sorry your season is so crazy. I’ll be praying for you today. And, I look forward to visiting your place. 🙂

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