Slow down and con­sider the dan­de­lions

Penticton Herald - - OPNION -

Iwas in my usual rush down Dil­worth Moun­tain, my mind a thou­sand kilo­me­tres away, when a sit­u­a­tion in front of me star­tled me back to re­al­ity.

A car was stopped al­most in the mid­dle of the road and four peo­ple were stand­ing be­side it. My first thought was, “Oh, no, I hope no one is hurt.” I just as­sumed there’d been an ac­ci­dent.

As I got closer, I re­al­ized there had been no ac­ci­dent, but that these folk were tourists and had stopped to take pic­tures of both the deer graz­ing be­side the road and of the amaz­ing lake view. Un­der my breath, I mut­tered an un-pas­toral phrase, inched my way past them and car­ried on hur­riedly down the hill.

It was sev­eral hours later in the day when God caught up to me. To be clear, the the­ol­ogy of that state­ment is a bit off, but I think you know what I mean.

One rarely en­coun­ters God mean­ing­fully when liv­ing at break­neck speed.

It was as if God was say­ing to me, “Tim, do you re­mem­ber when the beauty of My cre­ation used to fas­ci­nate you?”

Un­for­tu­nately, I needed to go a con­sid­er­able ways back in time to re­mem­ber. It co­in­cided with a time in my life when we had small chil­dren who were amazed at ev­ery dan­de­lion or but­ter­fly. They forced me to slow down and see the beauty.

The next ques­tion was, “How did I ever lose that? What was my hurry in the first place?” The truth was that I wasn’t late. Hurry had sim­ply be­come a habit.

The ex­pe­ri­ence drove me back to one word found over and over in the Bi­ble. It is the word, “con­sider.”

We are called to do a lot of con­sid­er­ing.

We are to con­sider that the Lord God is in heaven above and on the earth be­low.

We are to con­sider gen­er­a­tions long past and what their ex­pe­ri­ence has to teach us.

In 1 Sa­muel 24, we are called to con­sider what God has done for us in the past.

The eighth Psalm is one of the most fa­mous when the au­thor cried out, “When I con­sider the heav­ens, the work of your fin­gers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, where does hu­mankind fit?”

The wis­dom writer in the Proverbs en­cour­ages us to con­sider the ant and how dili­gently it works.

Je­sus told us to con­sider the lilies and the birds, and to learn about God’s care from them. And the writer to the He­brews in­structed us to “Con­sider Je­sus” and all He en­dured.

The long and short of it is that our lives are sig­nif­i­cantly en­hanced when lived with con­sid­er­a­tion. The ex­er­cise caused me to won­der how much I was miss­ing by skim­ming past life at 100 km/h.

I don’t rec­om­mend stop­ping in the mid­dle of the road to take pic­tures of the deer. Chances are you’ll be at risk be­cause of guys like me rush­ing by.

How­ever I do have a piece of ad­vice for my­self and for any who care to ac­cept it.

In­ten­tion­ally place sev­eral “con­sid­er­a­tion mo­ments” in your day — mo­ments in which you al­low God to catch up and bring in­sight and learn­ing to you that can never be learned at top speed.

Tim Schroeder is a pas­tor at Trin­ity Bap­tist Church.

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