As I sat there waiting to sing, I felt somewhat like I always feel when singing at a funeral–incredibly humbled to be asked to do so.
I expected this funeral to be more emotional than most for me, as this was someone whom I had known well. What I did not expect was that this funeral service would radically reorient my world! One by one, the adult children of this lady recounted how she had dedicated her life to being a faithful, supportive wife and loving and nurturing mother. I heard over and again how her faithful dependence on God and her intentional investment in her family had shaped both lives and hearts of her children and grandchildren.
As I sat there, a fragile shift was taking place deep in my soul. Though I saw value in all that I was doing, I knew I did not have a healthy life balance. I was approaching a place where I needed everything to just stop for a minute! In musical notation, this is called a grand pause. This marking indicates that the music stops at the direction of the conductor, and begins again only at his or her discretion. It is a most powerful effect in the midst of a musical composition. In that climactic moment of my life, I knew in my spirit that I needed a grand pause to realign my priorities and reorder my world.
Being too busy can certainly numb you to everything in your life. While rushing from one thing to the other, you neglect to be fully present in your very own life! I had unwittingly become a human “doing” instead of a human being. During my own “grand pause,” I learned some valuable lessons. Should you find yourself wishing that you could simply slow down and be more fully present in your own life, here are some helpful tips.
Take a moment to silence the noise. This may not mean that you radically change anything right away, but it does mean that you must take the necessary time to evaluate your life and your priorities. “A heart at peace gives life to the body.” (Proverbs 14:30)
Ask yourself the hard questions. It seems simple, but ask yourself–what do you really want? Do you want to spend more time with your children? Do you want to effect positive change in your community? Be painfully honest with yourself about your motivations.
Visualize a scrapbook of your life. If you don’t like what you see now, adjust your lens and begin taking new pictures! Your legacy is what you make of it.
Pray and seek God’s Word for guidance. When reading scripture, ask, “God, what do you want me to know?”
God’s word tells me that I am fully known and unconditionally loved by God, so approach scripture with a desire to learn something you don’t already know.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)