Recently I've been reading the book One Thousand Gifts. It's such a beautifully written book, so poetic, so convicting and filled with good truth and inspiration. One of the chapters that really stood out to me was about how routines, and constantly thinking about the "next thing", can speed up time. It can make us forget about stopping and finding joy and thankfulness in the little things throughout the day. This quote from the book says it well:
"I speak it to God: I don't really want more time; I just want enough time. Time to breathe deep and time to see real and time to laugh long, time to give You glory and rest deep and sing joy and just enough time in a day not to feel hounded, pressed, driven, or wild to get it all done."
Being a self-promclaimed futuristic thinker, and major fan of tasks and to-do lists, this idea really hit home with me and made me sit and think about my life a little closer. I had already found myself several times throughout the year complaining about how quickly it's passing by. Was that a sign? Maybe the speed of this year has been a reflection of my busyness and my lack and inability to STOP, look, feel, listen, touch, take in. How many moments am I missing? And not just the big moments, but the perfectly small and joyful moments I forget to see? --- This idea has been with me for a couple of weeks. How can I slow time and appreciate the beauty in this fleeting life?
Since this book is what I'm currently reading with a group of stellar ladies, we all talked last week about ways we wanted to challenge ourselves this week to slow down. I challenged myself to wake up earlier in the morning, instead of reaching for my phone to check up on the latest happenings in the social media world, I promised myself a morning of quiet time and journaling. I also wanted to remind myself to stop throughout the week to notice the little things and "be fully there" to take them in. Scattered throughout my journaling, I decided to begin keeping a list of gratitude and things I was thankful for. This helped remind me to look, slow down time, and find joy in the day to day. This week has been such an eye opening time for me. Starting my mornings with prayerful thoughts, capturing life and thankfulness in a journal rather than scrolling through emails, Instagram photos and the latest Buzz Feed article made such a difference. I found myself feeling more care-free, more joyful. I also caught myself on several occasion taking life in. Watching the way the light hit my husband's skin as he got ready for work early one morning, holding hands in the car with Jon while listening to the rain, and making a quick dash through the drizzle, taking time to make a toast before dinner, soaking in every detail and moment of our little one on the ultrasound during the anatomy check, the peacefulness and precise measurements in baking a new recipe...this is the way I want to live. Finding joy in life and in the little moments. Being fully there for my family and loved ones. Remembering. Loving. Stopping.
Routines are part of life, tasks should be done, goals need to be managed, but my hope is that these things won't make up my entire life. My hope is that I can continue to learn to slow down and see life. What a powerful and inspiring reminder!
What are ways that help you to slow down and take life in?
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