With Christmas less than a week away, what would it look like for you to take time to pause amongst the busyness?
We are constantly distracted during the holidays. Our minds work overtime to keep shopping lists, sale prices, coupons, Aunt Julie’s favorite kind of pajamas, and all the other details straight while navigating people, lines, and all the chaos of the season.
I was putting my son to bed and I caught myself lying to him!
I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. The obligatory “brush your teeth, put on your pajamas, get into bed and I will be right there.” Before we finished a prayer my thoughts were already focused on what I had to do next and my foot was already on the floor to leave. Without saying a word I showed him that I didn’t care.
Have you ever been so focused on your list that you allowed precious moments to slip through your fingers?
As I was lying next to him the word LINGER popped into my head. Something clicked at that moment. I realized that the hustle and bustle was stealing my joy.
I stopped the “exit slide” from his bed and I stayed with him for a few more moments. He began to open up about his day. We talked, we giggled, and we looked at each other in the eye. It didn’t last long, but when I think back on my day I realized we had shared a special moment.
Jesus teaches us how to be present and linger.
In the book of Mark, Jesus is on his way to heal a little girl who is dying. A mass of people surrounded Him and the pressure and chaos to move quickly must have been overwhelming. In the crowd was a woman who had suffered from bleeding for twelve years. She reached out, believing that if she could just touch the edge of His cloak she would find healing.
If you had been trying to make your way through that crowd would you have stopped? Would you have lingered?
Let’s see what Jesus did in this moment.
“At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, ‘Who touched my clothes?’ ’You see the people crowding against you,’ his disciples answered, ‘and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. He said to her, ’Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.’
Mark 5: 30-34
Jesus lingered and took the time to notice and listen to the woman.
What would be different if you took the time to linger?
You may be thinking, “lingering would be awesome, but the bottom line is there is not enough time!” If you think you don’t have time, let’s look at what linger actually means.
Linger simply means… slow to end.
It doesn’t mean you have to spend hours. To linger is to pause.
When you drive out of your neighborhood spend a moment taking in the beauty of the lights and decorations. When your favorite Christmas song is playing, stop, and ponder the words that declare our Savior is born. Take your foot off the floor and spend a little extra time enjoying special moments. Linger long enough to tend to the heart of a friend.
I get it! Everyone is busy. There’s not enough time. The “to-do” list never ends.
But, my prayer for you is that you will pause over the next week to take a deep breath and allow the significant moments of your day to be slow to end.
This week, let’s Reclaim the art of lingering,