My friend JT and I talk a lot about the subconscious. So if I were to say to him that the other morning, the first thing that popped into my mind was the phrase, “The unhurried life”, he’d ask me to sit with the phrase and see how it might be speaking to me.
I’d respond and say that I’m too busy to do that (two snare drum hits and a crash hit). 😉
I sat with the phrase. Why did my mind and heart lead me to this phrase? What might it mean for my current life context?
The God of creation worked for 6 metaphorical days (God did create but the Creation story seems to be rich with poetry and I don’t subscribe to a literal 6 day-24-7 narrative, although I believe God can do that!). He framed the world with earth and sky, sun and moon, water and land, plants and animals, humanity. And then He rested on the 7th day.
The creation account has an unhurried tempo to it. As a musician, I understand the value of tempo. A song too slow can drag. A song too fast can feel disjointed. The right tempo is needed to express the feel of the song. It can’t be rushed. The song needs to stay in the pocket in order to convey the feel and spirit of the melody and rhythm.
God’s work has a tempo. It’s unhurried. God’s work in creation has a rhythm to it and it feels like a beautiful song that has great feel. God was in the pocket. Deep groove.
God continues to work in our midst. We call this prevenience: God taking the initiative and working redemptively, salvifically, and strategically before I’m even aware of it. It’s the God who initiatives goodness into the ground, into our souls. He initiates the work, we respond to it. That’s what we call worship. God sets the tempo and feel of the song. We jump into the song and respond.
The unhurried life leans into God’s active work in our lives. We can listen and see what He’s up to, especially, when we are unhurried.
The temptation is to believe that I have to make things happen. I have to hustle. I have to work hard. Nothing comes easy in this world! Even typing this I start to rush the tempo. I’m not opposed to hard work and effort. Heck, sometimes I’m working a 12-14 hour day. But what I’m learning to be opposed to is a reactive tempo that speeds up or slows down beyond/below the gracious work of God in this world. My compulsive disease to be about the “next thing” prohibits me from being attentive to the work God is initiating in my life. And today, the work meant listening to the phrase “the unhurried life”.
Redemption, healing, renewal. These are the acts God initiates. This is the good tempo.