UNhurried {Celebrate This Week: 109}

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I’ve been living with words for a decade. They refine me. This year, I’ve been learning to live unhurried. This is what I’ve found: As I’ve stopped hurrying, more gets accomplished.

No joke.

I’ve been surprised to find that learning to live unhurried is more about learning to live by faith rather than a practice of mindfulness. The moments I start to hurry are the moments I quit trusting God. They are the moments when I think I need to get things done, stay in control, and have it all my way.

Life doesn’t work best this way.

In the past few weeks, things have not been going how I expect. My time keeps getting usurped. Random things have happened: lost car keys, a barely-there rash on one of the kids, forgotten dinner plans, getting stuck behind tractors and being rerouted for road work. Big things have happened: funerals, babies, and holidays.

Still ,with deadlines looming and friends calling and family missing me, I’ve tried to live unhurried. On Wednesday afternoon, it was all piling up, much like water ready to break through a dam. My internet was slow, a friend wanted to walk, and I still needed to go to the grocery store so I could make 3 dishes for Thanksgiving dinner at 5:30 pm and prepare to host another Thanksgiving dinner at our home the next day.

It was in this moment that I realized living unhurried has little to do with my own discipline and everything to do with faith. I listened to a Joyce Meyer podcast on my way to the grocery store. She shared a mantra: Do your best and let God do the rest.

It glued itself right to my inner being. My smile turned from weary to genuine and I did my best (and let God do the rest) in the grocery store. I didn’t have to backtrack a single time (and I always have to backtrack) and a new lane opened for me so there was no waiting.

I’ve struggled to learn about Sabbath, a time to abstain from work. I’ve pulled strings of understanding about rest. I’ve tried to mold unhurried into the bigger picture of rest and Sabbath.

It hasn’t fit.

I believe we are created to fill needs, we are made for good works, and the work we have to do is too big to do without faith. We are never enough on our own. I kept praying for a bigger understanding of Sabbath.

This is how unhurried has become a matter of faith. Because what I learned from Joyce Meyer is God allows rest within work. This mantra, I do my best and let God do the rest, has a double meaning with the word rest.

This is an act of trust. I know I’m incapable of completing the work before me, but I live knowing it will be completed. There is freedom in this truth and this freedom leads to rest. We had less than 90 minutes to make our 3 dishes, put away all of the groceries, shower and become presentable for Thanksgiving dinner.

I did my best and let God do the rest. Not only were the 3 dishes complete and groceries put away, but we started prepping dishes for the next day. We had fun. Laughter spilled out of our kitchen.

This may seem insignificant.
It’s not.

In times of stress, I’ve learned to force a state of calm, but my spirit is still twisted. I’m worried about things getting done. I’m focused on the next thing and the next thing. I don’t pause to listen or to laugh. I just plow through the tasks with an eerie calmness that forces people out of my way.

When I trusted that I could do my best and let God do the rest, my spirit was at peace. This is living a life unhurried. This is a life well-rested. This is Sabbath at its finest.

And this peace, this life unhurried, is a reason to celebrate.

If you want to see my decade of words, check out my video documentary.
My offerings to encourage writers (and their teachers), because I’m smitten by the way writers work…
My brand new online course for Choice Literacy: Writing Workshop Basics is open for registration. It’s all about molding writing workshop to be a well-oiled machine. This is one of my very favorite topics and I’m excited for the opportunity to get to share, inspire, and interact with an online class.
{Discover. Play. Build.} Website. It’s designed to be my offering to writing teachers. 
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( For more information on these resources (and others), check out this post.)
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Celebrate here!


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  1. This is a lovely celebration Ruth. I have been thinking about rest lately, and simplicity. Good words. What I too often forget is that God want to be with me, to do the rest (love the two meanings for that ord)

  2. This post is so helpful to me. I have been sitting back this holiday and allowing others to take charge. It's OK. My girls are old enough to do it and they have very strong opinions. So I am letting go and watching, listening, and laughing. It's all so good. I love how a little change in attitude can just make everything run smoother, and we can be happier.
    So great to meet you and have a brief hug last weekend.

  3. Ruth, I enjoyed learning what you learned in 2015 through your word unhurried. Your thoughts resonated with me because of the emphasis on faith. My word this year was core, and I had intended for it to be about the same work/family balance that I have been thinking of for years, but then right at the start of the year, I realized that it was more about reconnecting with my faith on a deeper level. I wrote more about it here if you are interested: http://focusingonthecore.blogspot.com/p/about.html

    I look forward to hearing what your word is for 2016. I am thinking about mine but still haven't decided.

  4. Ruth, I love the honest sharing of your life. I recognize many of your words from being one of many who follow your writing. What a blessing you are to all of us! I need to learn unhurried, because even in retirement there never seems to be enough time. And I totally get what a gift it was to not have to backtrack once. I'm the queen of backtracking! Have a wonderful rest of your holiday weekend.