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Speed Bump Ahead

A sign warning us to slow down


We’re all in a hurry!   Our gear box has one speed:  fast!

We scroll through social media looking for some quick, interesting stories that will briefly amuse us.  We skim through an article just long enough to get the basic gist of what the author is saying and then move on.  We grab a quick bite to eat and then inhale the food as we quickly return to work.

And, of course, to get the whole thing moving each morning, we grab a quick Bible verse to chew on as we breeze out the door.  Working.  Eating.  Reading.  Worshipping.  It’s all processed at pretty much the same speed.  Fast.  

When we sit down to read the Word, reflect on our lives or pray to God, we need to downshift a gear or two.  It’s never good to rush into and out of God’s presence.  Would you scurry in and out of a meeting with the CEO of your company?  Would you rush into and quickly exit a meeting with the head of your department?  Probably not.  If nothing else you would comport yourself with at least a modicum of dignity and show a little deference to the person you’re meeting.  Time with the Lord is no different.  Recognizing that we are with the King of Kings and Lord of Lords should govern the pace at which we operate.

We are in the presence of someone far more important than a company bigwig.

The speed at which we operate creates an artificial sense of significance in our lives.  Speed seems to say, “I am an important person and have a lot to do. The tasks I’m working on are significant.  My time is valuable - please don’t intrude upon it.”  It’s one thing to communicate that kind of pompous aura with others;  quite another to appear self-important in the presence of God.

Growing in the Christian life is a very long, slow process.  Reflecting on God’s Word – mulling it over in our minds – and thinking about its implications for our lives – takes time.  A lot of it!  God’s Word is not a vending machine where we simply drop in a little time, and expect a blessing to just pop out.  Not much of anything good happens when we look to the Bible for a quick sound bite that does little more than soothe our conscience or give us a sugar rush of courage for the day. 


Too often I have found myself treating God’s Word like a cup of coffee.  You grab a quick cup in the morning – hop in the car – and zip down the driveway. Likewise we grab a quick verse – slosh it around our brain cells a little – and then hurry off to things we consider more pressing.   

A man sitting at a desk with a book

Notice the slow pace of applying God’s Word to your life in the Book of Deuteronomy.  “And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.  You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.  You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”  (Deuteronomy 6:6-9)

The pace is leisurely, deliberate, focused, intentional and reverent.  The next time you sit down to read the Word . . . slow down.  Schedule enough time to read a passage thoughtfully.  Build in enough margin to meditate on the text, pray about it, and apply it to your life.  We all need to ditch the tendency to treat our time with God as little more than a quick scroll through Tik Tok.


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