Years ago I read a story by a well known Pastor that really caught my attention. For the last several years he had been regularly seeking the advice of an older pastor who was acting as his spiritual director. Through interaction with this older pastor he was adding depth and intimacy to his personal relationship with Jesus.
With the older man’s advice he had added a number of spiritual practices such as Lectio Divina to his daily routine. Recently he had taken a position at one of the largest churches in the United States. After the first few months of adjustment he decided to call his spiritual director. He was excited to share all the new things God was doing in his life.
After a while he asked the older man, “What new spiritual practice would you recommend to help me continue to grow in my relationship with Jesus?” Immediately the pastor responded, “You need to ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.”
I’ve thought a lot about that story over the years. Most of my life, I have prided myself on always working hard and accomplishing as much or more than those around me. I have tried to fill up every waking moment with something important. If possible I try to be doing something important whenever I am stuck in a situation that might be wasting time. I want to go through the shortest line, and drive in the fastest lane on the road.
The older I get, the more I realize that doing things quickly and running on adrenaline is a hinderance to experiencing God’s presence and hearing God’s voice. In order to have a quality time hearing what God wants to say to me I have to s l o w w a y d o w n .
The next time you set out to meditate on Scripture, try taking five or six minutes to just be quite in God’s presence. Take two or three deep breaths, and let them completely out. Sit comfortably, and be sure to relax all your muscles. I find that often I am tense without even realizing it. Invite the Holy Spirit to come and rest upon you . . . to come and open your understanding of God’s Word . . . to speak to you those things that Jesus wants to say to you.
PRACTICE THE DISCIPLINE OF SLOWING