Last week Margaret and I took some vacation time. She had a conference in Baltimore that ended Tuesday afternoon so I flew out to meet her for a few days of relaxation and touring. So much for relaxation. We stayed in Arlington, VA which is just across the Potomac River from Washington DC.
For three days we would leave the hotel at 8am and not get back until 9 or 10pm. Take the subway into DC and then walk several miles each day as we toured the Smithsonian, monuments, and the Capitol. Observing a lot of different things there is one thing I did notice, the dichotomy of DC.
Everyday there are thousands of people flooding in and out of the subway cars. They run from one train to the next, one platform to the other and then up and down the escalators and steps in a hurry to get to their destination. The pace of life in DC is a lot quicker than life in KC. Okay, so here is the contrast.
I watch talk news programs and the sense that I get is that our government is so polarized that it is almost at a dead stop. It is paralyzed by sound bite demagoguery and fear of losing position and power. It is easier to do nothing than the potential of being held accountable for doing something. (Certainly this is my personal opinion and assessment of the situation.)
So why is the pace of life so fast in DC? If the Washington political machine is at a dead stand still then why are people scurrying around in a big hurry? To me, people are simply going nowhere fast.
Yep – a spiritual application is next! How quickly are you running through your life? Do you feel like you are going nowhere fast? Several of us read the demographic study for 64157 zip code. About 65% of those who live in this area are young families who are over-scheduled, have little extra time, and don’t know if God or church is really necessary. Sounds like a lot of families going nowhere fast.
Matt wrote a blog earlier today about Sabbath. It is worth the read at www.preachinmoose.wordpress.com. Even here in KC where we claim to have a slower pace to life we still travel at the speed of exhaustion trying to cram it all in for ourselves and our kids.
Now, while Matt’s blog talks about Sabbath – I am going to ask you a different question – point in a different direction that is still complimentary to Matt’s post. If you are cruising through life at a breakneck pace for what purpose? Just to keep busy or appear busy? For financial gain? To give your kids everything you did not have? To keep up with your neighbors or simply because no viable alternative has been presented that has greater meaning or value?
We all want the world to be a better place – we have a faint hope that Washington could or might be the place to effect change for the better of all people. I would propose to you that government is not the solution – the church is. And that a life lived at break neck speed for Jesus Christ can effect significant and lasting change on our local community and the world. I truly believe that a viral spread of the values that Jesus taught and the lifestyle that he lived is what will save humanity. But it takes each of us – the church – going somewhere fast! That is into the world with the message of God’s life transforming power through Jesus Christ.
Here are a couple of questions to comment on: what do you believe is the purpose for your life? How do you believe the Christian life is to be lived (i.e. quietly, slowly, methodically, radically, etc.) Are you on a breakneck pace and for what reason?
There is an old story about a little boy who came home from kindergarten one day – he was asked what he learned that day and his response was “sharing.” Feel free to share your thoughts and comments about going nowhere or somewhere fast.