It has happened again – we are too busy. Every year we try to tell ourselves that we will slow down, say no, and find a good pace of life. Every year we are back running hectic – with work, friends, sports, and more. If we have kids we sign them up for activity after activity, teaching them to run frantic like we do. If we exercise it is another thing to try to fit in. Even our fun has to be scheduled!
Over a thousand years ago, a Christian man named Benedict wrote out what he called the “Rule” for life – a way to order life ut in omnibus glorificetur Deus, “that in all God may be glorified” (57.9). It was written for monks, but became read throughout the western world. The day was filled with regular times to pray, and regular times to work – it was all about the rhythm of ora et labora “pray and work”. Today we talk much about “balance” – but there are some things in my life I don’t want in balance – selfishness, sin, etc. There are other things I want an endless supply of – love, Jesus, etc. Rhythm is a better picture of life for us. We may need to add in regular times of prayer in our day – five and six times a day. Can we stay in rhythm with Jesus? Can we stay in stride with the Savior?
At the end of the summer I went backpacking with my son in the Emigrant Wilderness. I had not been backpacking for over 15 years, and he had never gone, so we were planning on taking it slow. We wound up taking it very slow – it took us 8 hours to go 3.5 miles! In our defense it was raining some of the time, and it was pretty much all uphill. We had to take a lot of stops. But you know what? Some of those stops were the best parts of the trip. There I was, out in the wilderness with my son, no cell service, and we were having a great time throwing rocks, talking, eating too much trail mix, being together. It wasn’t about making it to the campsite, but about being with the Lord and my son in the wild. Of course, once we made to our campsite, Relief Reservoir, we were pretty happy! I learned it is OK to rest on the journey – and the rest can sometimes be the point of the whole trip.
We need rest and rhythm – this is the very pattern of life that Jesus modeled for us. Are you out of rhythm with Jesus? If so, don’t beat yourself up, but try to stay in step. If you are going too fast – slow down, disconnect from distractions, and plug in to Christ. If you are going too slow – dive in, move with Christ, see His work before you. For all of us, we need rest – times to be refreshed, laugh, play, dance. The Lord made time – may we use our days to glorify the Lord and be full of His life!