Reflections for the inner life.
by Hayne Steen
Why do we resist what we know is so good for us?
We know a walk on the beach is good for us, even restorative to our soul, yet we still can tell ourselves, "I don't have time for a luxury like that!"
There is a hunger in the human heart for beauty. When we deprive ourselves of the experience of spending extended time in a context of beauty and wonder, our souls shrink.
When our souls shrink, we become vulnerable to the disease of despair. We begin to believe the lie. Every future day is doomed to be like every one of our worst days.
What can rescue us from the soul shrinking disease of despair?
Some believe accomplishing more will take away that ache. Others think earning more money will cure it. Yet still some believe having more stuff will solve it.
What is the enemy of true soul rest? More.
Ted Turner was interviewed years ago at the height of wealth. When asked how much money was enough, he offered a simple but painfully honest answer. "Just a little bit more."
When we resist the temptation to succumb to our addiction to "more" we can begin to reach for the pause button. We need to climb out of our wardrobes of self importance into something a little more comfortable, like maybe a bathing suit and some flip flips.
Let's ask this question again...what CAN rescue us from the soul shrinking disease of despair?
Walking barefoot on the beach. Reading a good novel. Journaling your desires. Listening to bird song. Going for a bike ride. Building a bonfire. Handwriting a letter to an old friend. Go to the circus. Shop at the local farmers market. Do something you've never done before.
These are just a handful of practical ways we can begin to remind ourselves that we are not defined by how much "MORE" we can accomplish, earn, or have. We have been given unclaimed treasure in Dallas Willard's divine invitation to "ruthlessly eradicate hurry" from our lives.
If momentum robs the human soul of intimacy, the power of pause becomes the well worn wagon trail to our soul's flourishing. Our soul knows the way, if we'll give it permission.
May you find physical spaces of beauty and wonder, and may those lead you inward to enjoy the beauty and wonder within you.
ST. AUGUSTINE OFFICE