“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
That’s a quote from one of my all-time favorite movies, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, which came out in 1986.
I am not proud to say that I am guilty of not stopping and looking around often enough. Ferris was right. Life does move pretty fast. I mean, it’s already been thirty-three years since Matthew Broderick looked into the camera and delivered that line. Mercy.
I teach my students in Sociology class about situational awareness. Most of us are flying through life, our noses in our phones, and missing the world going on around us. It’s sort of epidemic in its impact. Life is happening right in front of us, and we would rather see what’s happening on a six inch screen. Our grandparents and great grandparents would truly think we are nuts. Maybe we are. In a world that is growing more dangerous all the time, we are paying less and less attention to it… like lambs to the slaughter.
I’m not preaching. I am guilty. So guilty. I am super busy. I work a full time job at a large hospital in town, and I teach Sociology at a local ministry school. My father, 82, lives with me. I have six mostly grown children, but you never stop being a mom. And I am a full time wife. I have a few friends, hobbies, and interests I pay attention to when I have a minute to slip them in. I know. It’s absurd.
But I am aware that I don’t hold a corner on the busy market. We all pack in as much as we can each day, and most of us fall into bed only after the alternative would lead us to a potentially catastrophic result. Then we get up the next morning, stumble into the shower to start the whole thing over again. I’m exhausted just writing about it.
My point is… we need to slow down a bit. Once in a while.
I decided to do that recently. I attended an event in support of an organization (www.blessedbrokenness.org) that I am privileged to serve which offers help to couples dealing with infertility. It was sort of a nice Thank You to all those who had supported the ministry with their financial gifts this year. It was held in a snazzy little art gallery. I decided to slow my roll a bit, take the time to look at the art hanging on the walls, appreciate the artistry and talent, and soak it all in.
My daughter is an artist. She hopes to one day support herself through her art, but currently she still has a day job or two. She is so very talented, and I believe that one day her art will hang in galleries like the one I visited last night. As I walked through the gallery I prayed, again, for that reality.
As I turned my attention to the presentation for the evening, a really nice video played that spoke to the mission and vision of the organization. Right smack dab in the middle of the video was a piece that my daughter had drawn more than two years ago for the study book this group uses with those it tries to help. Right there, projected on the wall of that gallery, was a piece of art my daughter created. Not ten minutes prior, I had prayed for her art to be on the walls of a gallery like that one, impacting people for the glory of God.
I know, you know, and God knows that’s not exactly what I meant. But I saw it as a confirmation to me that He heard me. And I certainly heard Him. But only because I decided to slow my roll long enough to be able to hear Him.
I hope that in the hustle and bustle of this holiday season, you will take some time, a moment here and there, to slow down and listen. Let’s lift our heads, turn our hearts to Him, and pay attention. He is speaking, and we don’t want to miss it.