It is Groundhog Day in the US, and Rich Dixon has a reminder of a kind of trap we can fall into.
We’ve been trapped for nearly a year in the tyranny of urgent.
Ever since we heard the news about a strange novel virus, we’ve been bouncing from one crisis to another. Changing guidelines. Tragic numbers that translate into real pain for real individuals. Division and violence.
In a few different ways, I’m reminded this week of something that’s easy to forget as I pinball from one dilemma to the next.
Jesus was never in a hurry.
He had limited time and was immersed in a crisis-filled culture ruled by a brutal foreign empire. Overwhelming poverty and disease. Widespread political and religious corruption. One might imagine Him engaged in a non-stop 24/7 frenzy to remedy these horrific circumstances.
Instead, scripture records several instances when Jesus literally moved away from crowds of people with urgent needs. He spent lots of time talking to His Father.
From His actions we might conclude that He just didn’t care, that the daily struggles of the people He encountered didn’t matter to Him. Or…
What if Jesus cared about justice more deeply than we can imagine and He wants us to care as well?
What if He was showing us that caring doesn’t have to mean a hair-on-fire scramble from crisis to crisis?
What if was teaching us about trust? What if He wants us to do life as He did, doing the best with what we have and trusting God for the outcome? What if He wants us to take our responsibility seriously, and also trust that He’s in control?
What if He was teaching us that spending time talking and listening to Him is essential, that nothing else works quite right without it?
What if He was showing us how to focus a bit more quietly on what’s important and how to release ourselves from the tyranny of urgent?