I’ve been wondering if God sometimes has to bring circumstances and situations into our lives to get us to slow down…stop…reflect. And I’m pretty sure that he does. This has hit home within the last couple of days. My wife started experiencing too many contractions for us being still 5 weeks away from the delivery date. So after a trip to the doctor, we are now at the beginning of 5 weeks of required bed rest for her. This has brought home very quickly for us a new way of having to do life. We are both very independent and hard working people with pretty busy schedules, and we were using these next 5 weeks to finish the things we needed to finish before the baby came (i.e. transitioning people at work, finishing the baby room, etc.), you know all the supposedly “important stuff.” Now that has come to a screeching halt.
But even in the last couple of days I think we have both been learning a lot. We’ve been learning that when we live life at such a go, go, go pace you hardly have time to notice the other beautiful things happening around you. We’ve been learning that when you live so frantically at times, that you realize the things you think are important are really not that important at all. Instead this slowing down helps you refocus what is really important. We’ve been learning to rely on and serve each other more. I think we have been doing this, but when one is on bed rest it becomes even more evident how much you need each other and how you must work more together. When we as people are very independent, holding down jobs, running meetings, driving all over town, you forget how much we need each other in community.
And one of the biggest lessons we have been learning is how much we need the people around us (friends, family and co-workers). They have set up schedules to bring over food, to visit my wife when I have to leave for meetings, etc. All this makes me realize that we don’t often like relying or depending upon other people because we can be so use to doing things for ourselves.
Last night in college group we began a six week summer study on the book of 1 John. And last night we focused a lot on 1 John 1:1-4 and there are many amazing things that one can talk about in that passage, but two things stick out in my mind as I think about what is going on in my wife and I’s life right now.
One, the tangibility of what John describes concerning the word of life. He states that they “touched” and “heard” and “looked” at. God, incarnate in the human form of Jesus Christ is not “out there”, but is “here” with us in very tangible ways.
Second, one of the ways that God becomes tangible to us is through the ways we experience Him in the fellowship with one another, and the fellowship that John says we share with the Father and His Son Jesus Christ. The fellowship of our friends has brought home new ways of experiencing the love, grace, service and humility of Christ.
Though bed rest is not something I wish upon anyone, I almost feel as if God has done us a big favor (that’s easier for me to say since I’m not the one on bed rest), because it has helped us realign our priorities as we head into the birth of our first child.