When I left the corporate world a few years ago, I made a choice to get away and seek a time of rest, renewal, and preparation for a new season of service. I decided to go through ten years of prayer journals to discover red threads of wisdom the Lord was teaching me. While some red threads were one to two years in length, there was only one ten-year long thread.
For that entire period, and quite frankly years before, God was working in my heart to teach me about slowing down and spending time with Him. But slowing down and spending time with Him and others competed with my tightly scheduled calendar.
Not long after discovering this red thread, I spent two and a half hours over lunch with a friend. It wasn’t planned that way, but there wasn’t anything on my calendar I had to do. We caught up, shared insights, and encouraged each other. More time helped us listen better, ask thoughtful questions, and speak into each other’s lives in a fresh way. It was the first time in my life I’d ever made that kind of time for someone over lunch. As I was driving home, I realized the many times I had cut short a conversation that was important in order to make the next meeting. I began allowing much more time for meetings, conversations, and lunch, providing space and time for God to work. And the red thread of relationship has become more important than my calendar and to-do list.
‘Spend time with me, slow down, and experience rest and relationship. Find peace for your soul. I will give you My heart that values people over success, self, and stuff. My heart that listens, loves and encourages. My heart that deeply cares about people.’
Psalm 62:1 My soul finds rest in God alone.
1 Thessalonians 5:11 So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind. (MSG)