Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Slowing Down Life

For a while now, but more in earnest the past two months, we've been trying to slow down the pace of our family's life. We don't function well when more time is spent telling our kids to get their shoes on and get in the car than is spent encouraging them, teaching them, loving them.

We know this.

Also, with our new daughter coming home from Ethiopia hopefully within a few months? weeks? (My standard response now to ALL THE QUESTIONS I'm getting about WHEN?! is "could be 4 weeks, could be 4 months" and that is the sad truth!) it is going to be imperative that we have a slowed down life for a long while as she transitions into our family and our world. Imagine being a 3 year old who spent an entire year in one room of a care center, with the the exception of occasional walks outside to the other care center down the street. Do you think a trip to Target might be a tad overwhelming? How about the observation room at your new sister's gymnastics? Church? A school carnival?

We are very excited to introduce our daughter to a bunch of new experiences, things we totally take for granted as regular, every day stuff. BUT, we are going to have to ease into those things, slowly. And, she is going to need a whole lot of our focused attention, meaning less attention for other things.

Hence again, the need for the slowed down life.

But, I'm going to be honest here. After 2 months of really trying to slow it down, of feeling like I say "No" to outside requests for my time about 50 times per day, LIFE IS STILL NOT SLOW!

So it begins again, another attempt to clear our plates and calendars.

And maybe it's just because I'm really noticing now as I'm forcing myself to hyper-evaluate every request, even if it's just a one time, one hour commitment, but doesn't it seem like the demands are rather relentless?

To complicate things, the demands are for good things so it's hard to say "no".

Really, many come from my church, some even as boldly as "You were recommended for this committee, let us know which time slot every other weekend would work best for you to volunteer." Me: "Huh? They're not asking if I want to sign-up but just which time slot?" Yeah, I wasn't probably as kind as I should have been in my response where I detailed all that my husband and I already do for the church, our family situation with a new child on the way via adoption and that we just couldn't commit to any more. But, thank you for thinking of me!"

I'm sorry if this sounds like ranting, I don't mean it to be. I actually am not one of those people who believes God has me on this earth to just serve my family. I do believe in volunteering outside of my own little world, in Mark 16:15 Jesus said, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation." But, there is such thing as too much.

So in a society that seems to value "busy" and "multi-tasking", I feel like I'm swimming upstream, but thankful for the opportunity to keep trying and asking for God's discernment.

Romans 12:2, "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."

Find more Thankful Thursday here.


  1. Such a fantastic post, bless you. This is Denise from shortybears place.

  2. Slowing down is something we all can do in this busy world. It is so easy to over committ ourselves, especially at church. I have always said that it is better to do one thing and do it well then to do too many things and not do anything well. You are placing some important things in place as you await your precious arrival. Thank you for sharing your precious heart with us over at THANKFUL THURSDAY! ((Laurie))

  3. An TT pst spoken to my heart!
    I had to slowdown also some month´s ago after an mental and physical breakdown an very hard wake-up call......

    Being thankful today with you....

  4. I have been going through a long process of recognizing and trying to live the importance of slowing down. It certainly is not easy, but it is worth it. His Word's are wisdom in this case that you have caught so well: "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."

  5. My sister in law just got back from the Ukraine adopting a special needs child. Her blog post to let everyone know to leave them alone (well she says it more nicely) is here. May give you some ideas how to handle it when you bring home your little girl.

  6. Hello.. visiting from TT. I read your post and I have to tell you that I have felt guilty at times for not doing more.

    The demands of my family have always kept me pretty busy and I've left all the volunteering to my husband and daughter who's an altar server at Church. Just when I thought I could be more active I got pregnant with my youngest and, though she's now 5, the pace doesn't seem to be slowing down much.

    Though at times I feel I should be doing things for the church, I am reminded that my first duty is to the family that God gave to me and the season will come when He'll have me out there doing more.. in His timing.

    Thanks for this encouragement.. there are seasons in life when you have to take it nice and slow.. and you have to say a bit more no's.

    God bless!

  7. I think you are SO smart to start slowing down now!! That never occurred to me. So now I'm home with Amani and had to slam on the brakes on our schedule!!! And I just had that conversation with my husband tonight about how I think we need to slow down some more!

    I'm praying for you. For Embassy. For all that mess. Praying that sweet girl of yours lands at home as soon as humanly possible!!


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