Monday, April 11, 2016

When SLOW isn't slow.

Where to begin? Our life lately has not been slow. At.all. It's a hard story with sensitive details so I'll just say this - we've had extra children in our home for 8 days and counting as of this writing. A 2 and 12 year old brother and sister have been staying with us. We also have their dog!

In the midst of a completely exhausting {physically, emotionally, mentally} week, I was reminded by God numerous times that I was at peace. I can still have peace in the midst of chaos when my heart is set on Him.

I've also been reminded that by saying YES to God, I am actually walking a life of slow. When you consider the spiritual/heart side of slow that I have talked about many many times over the years -


Surrendering to God is how we found ourselves taking in two children who needed a place while their mom and baby brother are at the hospital. Listening to God and hearing His heart on opportunities and people around me require my action. I will either choose to obey or not, it's that simple.

At the end of the day, I want the way I lived {my testimony} to be one that worships Him. That points people around me back to Him. That focuses my heart on the things I have to be grateful and thankful for in the midst of the hard.

In God's perfect timing {and humor} I submitted my complete manuscript and all the photos for my book in the midst of this not-so-slow week. We also discovered a mouse living in our bedroom wall {hello, scratchy and chewy noises at night - ick!} and  completed our last day of Classical Conversations for this school year.

My slow-life self would never have chosen this timing but God has His reasons and I have thought of a couple of them perhaps. One, because I am completely weak and spent there can be no doubt that these accomplishments are happening because of His strength. Yes, I am obeying, but He is providing the very strength to do that obeying and to follow through. Also, to remind me slow cannot become an idol - to live a life of slow cannot and must not be my ultimate goal in life. To show God's love to others and live a life that pleases Him - now there is an ultimate goal worth fighting for.

I'm reminded that living SLOW {surrendered, listening, obeying, worshiping} is a good place to be because it is in the middle of His will and in saying yes to Him I might find myself in a situation that is not physically slow. I am still looking for little moments like taking a walk alone after one toddler is in bed and the older four are playing a game after dinner, doing a craft outside while everyone plays around me, gardening together, resting during quiet time, getting up before all the kids wake to have the quiet house be a blessing to me before the day begins.

Perhaps you can relate. There is slow we choose and there is slow that chooses us sometimes too. Times where we cannot do the things we want in the way we might choose.

As hard as this place is, as fragile as I feel in keeping up with the daily demands right now, I feel grateful and peaceful that saying yes to God is the very best kind of slowing I could ever choose - slowing to self and quickening to be more like Him.

Thank You, Jesus.

UPDATE: This was written a couple of weeks ago - children {and dog!} are back with their family and  I have found myself wondering again what I'm supposed to learn through it. I had planned to publish it earlier in the week and then held off - sorry that I probably caused some confusion in referring to this post on my Slow Day post today but it hadn't actually posted yet! Also, we got the mouse for inquiring minds :)


The Believing Wifey said...

Oh my, I can't tell you just how encouraging this was to read. Thank you for sharing of God's faithfulness.

Mrs. Chrissy T said...

I understand totally. I always pray that SLOW or Rest doesn't become an idol. While I know we are to have time to slow we must never ever make this what our lives is all about. Especially with a world dying, hurting, and lost. I don't want to stand in front of Him and he say good job living a slow life, ever studying but never learning and doing, soaking in Me but never sharing Me with others. Ouch.

Agnes said...

Monica, you are so lucky to have been a friend chosen to take care of the children. It is an honor. This means that you mean a lot for a mom, this is beautiful, and yes it is chaos sometimes, but is a beautiful gift you did.

*carrie* said...

Thanks for sharing, Monica. I hadn't heard the mouse part--eek! You gave an incredible gift to that family. Love you!