Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Don't Just Do Something, Stand There!

Busy schedules run our lives. In our society, being idle is looked down upon and staying "insanely busy" is applauded. "You must be someone really important to have so many demands on your time" is part of the logic. We've all heard the phrase, "Well don't just stand there, do something" but why do we think so negatively on just standing there?

I have recently taken a job in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. It is a summer position and afterwards, I will return to the reality of not living at the beach and so close to the vast and incredible ocean. This is a less commercialized area with many opportunities for spending time alone in nature. After living in D.C., it is a welcome change.

The most incredible part about this experience though is the intentional simplification I am going through. Due to chronic allergies worsening, I have cut out gluten, dairy, and almost all refined sugar to see if my health improves. I have downsized and gotten rid of my tv. I pulled out the beautiful guitar I have never made time to use and the camera I have always wanted to learn. The books I've never read are being dusted off. The quiet time with God is recharging. The phone is being left random places and social media experiences more neglect.

I recently read, "Sometimes individuals or churches are so busy carrying out plans they think will help achieve God's purposes that they don't bother to find out what He actually wants" (Experiencing God). It's like when a child attempts to help a parent but ends up making a bigger mess. Sometimes it is healthier for a relationship to go slow and not necessarily "do" things all of the time but step back and listen and experience the lack of doing something.

I am at fault for allowing lots of extra "noise" to cloud out situations and blind me to what is happening before my eyes. The other night I was helping with a patient who was rapidly declining. As I am new to this facility, I am still learning to recognize the different equipment they use. Their crash cart is much different looking than most I have worked with and as I called out and began to go get the crash cart in the place it normally was, I rushed right by the CRASH CART! My coworker thankfully re-routed me and embarrassed I pulled it into the room. The problem was not that I didn't have good intentions, the problem was that I hadn't trained myself well enough on the subtle things (like the colors of the cart) and I didn't pause and get enough situational awareness.

As Christians, we have to be careful to not get caught up in the tasks and visible, extraordinary experiences and miss the entire point of getting closer to God. Many people have experienced a loved one who doesn't seem to just stop and listen to what you are saying and continues to fail to get your point. I wonder how often God feels that way about us. Psalm 37:7 says, "Rest in Jehovah, and wait patiently for him: Fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way." Essentially David is saying, "Stop and just relax in who God is and what He is doing and stop comparing yourself and trying to keep up with those around you!" Social media allows us to see what everyone that we have ever made contact with and decided to be "friends" with is up to. It often provides us a terrible opportunity for comparison of our lives with the perceived lives of others. This is all for now. Off to the beach!

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