The warm October sun shines vibrantly through our maple tree’s leafy red flags, cautioning me that winter is just a few miles ahead. The season is changing quickly, but I want to play traffic cop. I want to make it park right here next to this red octagon at the end of the street. Stop. Just s-t-o-p. Stop the clock already.
But so many of the other maples are waving their brilliant, glowing yellow flags at me as I drive by. “Slow down!” They cry. “Slow down, pull over, look up and enjoy this beautiful day.”
The earth keeps spinning, and I suppose time is still going as fast as it always has, from one season to the next.
So why do I feel dizzy? Why do I feel like we are spinning and speeding from one week to the next in a racing blur of activity? In my dizziness, it seems I forget where we are going and why.
I study my young dancers. These dancers, they spin and twirl and they don’t get dizzy because they fix their eyes on something that isn’t moving. A focal point.
Yes, Hebrews 12:2. I need to stop spinning in distraction and fix my eyes on Jesus. He’s the steady, immovable One, and His love for me never changes. Colossians 3 says Jesus is seated above at the right hand of God, and that’s where I need to set my heart and mind — on things above.
Looking up I see that’s where every good and perfect gift comes from. The Father of Lights, He sends these gifts down to us, and unlike the golden leaves on the maple trees, He never changes and He never leaves us.
So yeah, dancers don’t get dizzy because they know where to focus. And dancers know where they are going because they count. They count the time in each measure of music so they can move with the music. Not way out ahead of it. Not far behind it. With it. To stay with it, they must count.
So when did I stop counting each day’s gifts? Because counting the gifts from above, the joys, the ways God loves me, that’s what helps me keep in step with Him. That’s what helps me remember where I am going and why. That’s what slows me down.
Ann Voskamp’s wise words taught me the only way to slow down time.
“Life is not an emergency.
And this, this is the only way to slow down time:
When I fully enter into the current moment with the weight of all my attention, I slow the torrent with the weight of me all here.
Weigh down this moment in time with attention full, and the whole of time’s river slows, slows, slows.
In this space of time and sphere, I am attentive. I am aware. I am accepting the whole of the moment, weighing it down with me all here. This giving thanks for one thousand things, it’s that too, an invitation to slow time down with weight of full attention.” -Ann Voskamp
Lord, the leaves glow a golden yellow and this day is beautifully golden! Thank You for making this day. Thank You for reminding me that this day is frail and fleeting. Help me slow down. Help me give this day the weight of my full attention and help me love those around me with my full attention.
Thank You for the vibrant fall colors that reflect Your glory. Thank You for these memorable moments with my lively little girls playing in the leaves, dancing in the autumn sunshine and strolling off to their piano lessons. Thank You for Your steadfast love and great faithfulness. Amen.
“This day we’re given is golden; let us show love. This day is ours for one moment; let us sow love. This day is frail – it will pass by. So before it’s too late to recapture the time, let us share love, let us share God, before this day is gone.” — from Point of Grace’s song “This Day”