Learning to Be

Stillness vs. The “American Dream”

“Greed is good for the economy,” Reagan said, and it was true.  So we rushed to our jobs, to sign up for overtime, to buy bigger houses and bigger toys for our shrinking lives.  No time.  No energy.  No passion for people.

So I poured myself out for others.  But I still found myself rushing from activity to activity, running myself dry.  A life of service can be just as draining and self-defeating as a life for self.

My soul has begun its slow rebellion.  This is a battle I will be fighting for the rest of my life.  I am doing less, resting more, and listening: to others, to God, and to myself.  “In godliness and contentment is great gain,” said Paul.  I had forgotten how much so until reading about Taoism and Winnie the Pooh (*paraphrase from Benjamin Hoff’s The Tao of Pooh, quoting Milne’s original):

“When you wake up in the morning, Pooh,” said Piglet, “what’s the first thing you say to yourself?”          

“What’s for breakfast?” said Pooh.  “What do you say?”

“I wonder what’s going to happen exciting today?”

Pooh nodded thoughtfully.  “It’s the same thing.”

All of the adventure, joy, beauty, and life that we seek are right under our noses.  God, give us the eyes to see it, and the hearts to embrace it!

 

Pooh and Piglet

 

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. One of the best understandings of Rest and Work I’ve heard is that until we realize the Work has been done and until we rest in God’s Approval, our work can never be simply about the work itself and our good works can never be about loving others–instead it will always be about proving to ourselves and others how great we are. And that is where the weariness comes in, the Work beneath the “work”. Then work can be just work and for the sake of the work itself, and loving others can simply be about loving others.

    (from sample sermons on http://www.redeemer.com on Work and Rest and on Change)

  2. Amen! I should go about my daily business in light of Christ’s Work on the cross, with an attitude that reflects it. Everything that truly needed to be done has already been done on my behalf.


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