All Things Slow

Dishes will always need to be washed, but the storyteller may be inspired by the sage just in that moment.
Alone in my favorite meadow in Central Oregon - soaking in the sun, the quiet and all the grand mountains surrounding me with no agenda other than just to be.

I love all things slow.  It’s the way I was made.  Deep down I love to savor and enjoy and rest and just be.  I love to take in my surroundings. I love to be quiet.  I love to sleep or just lay without hurry in a comfortable bed—I could probably do it for hours on end on a weekend morning. I like to bake sourdough bread over time with all of the intentionality and artistry it takes (even though I am a far cry from baker or artist).  I like to sit and read and write for hours. I like to linger over meals and listen to whatever story may be told.  

I always linger at the dinner table, and now my kids do the same, always hopeful for a good story or conversation.

The people who rush to clean dishes I will never understand—dishes will always need to be washed, but the storyteller may be inspired by the sage just in that moment.  

Perhaps my love for the slow life was influenced some by the way I was raised too.  I have a very southern mother who has her own version of time. In our growing up years, she could be spontaneous and she also knew how to enjoy people and an experience without fighting to get to the next thing. We would plan to leave for a trip one day only to leave the next day instead because why be a slave to schedules and the clock?! I always deeply appreciated the way she did things—even as a kid I recognized the immense value of sitting and listening and really being wherever I was.  

My Mom. She's helped to teach me the beauty of the slow life and a good story.

I have had moments of feeling bad about my slowness—thinking how the fast-paced person I am with must be going crazy enduring my tortoise-like movements. But in the end, it’s one of my favorite parts of how God created me.  

I have a tendency to get focused on tasks—my slowness is like my saving grace. It keeps me from getting lost in my whirlwind attempt (even my slow whirlwind attempt) of keeping life tidy. It keeps me from missing a lot of beauty--even for a slow person, life will pass you by if you don’t pay attention to it.  

To be clear, I do not think my slow pace trumps others’--there is so much merit to the medium and fast speeds.  Honestly, sometimes I desperately wish I was a bit faster in all ways.  But in the end, we were all made to walk at a unique cadence. Each has its own saving grace when looked for.  Each has something to learn from another. And each has something to share.  So, it’s your turn.  What’s your pace? What do you love about it? What’s your saving grace?

If I were to share advice from what I’ve learned from my steady adagio tempo it would be this: sit, walk with another, stay seated after a meal; tell the story; listen to someone else intently, drink that 3rd cup of coffee, watch the sunset, go on the long hike, seek after the music, dance the last dance, look into an expression, take that extra five minutes, take a deep breath, punch the punching bag if that’s what the moment calls for. This sounds very carpe diem, but really what I mean is much more: Live life remembering you’re a soul with a body, not the other way around. Live presently with an eye ever present on what’s to come; and live watching where your gifts, your story—your being—might intertwine in the grander story being written in which you’ve been given a very special role to play. Easier said than done, but a worthy rhythm to strive for.

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Things are not always “fixed” right away or even ever; but by these Streams of Water that Flow, I have found more life, love and kindness than I ever knew was possible. And that’s what I want to write about–little moments from these Streams that Flow.
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