Our family added to the chaos of the Royal’s “T-shirt Tuesday”. Another spectator, as they tried to get to their seat, bumped into Darcy and the sippy cup slipped out of her hands. It bounced into the aisle, down the steps, reached the end and jumped right over the edge. It fell from the upper deck to the people below.
Life is often this way. A no big deal – don’t cry over spilled milk – moment, keeps on bouncing downward. Until this “little” event is racing over the edge on the way to a cranium cracking collision.
Thankfully no one was hurt in the dropping of the sippy cup (or at least no one admitted to being beaned by a sippy). Life is often this way too. The craziest moments, where everything is falling apart, end up as no big deal. I look back on those days and wonder why I was so stressed. In the end the moment was just a lost “sippy cup” – why did it cause me to lose so much sleep?
How can we tell the difference? Which moments are important, which are insignificant? What will blow up, what will fizzle out? Logically you might say we should pay closer attention – but as a studier of life, paying closer attention just makes me stress about everything!
Instead I think we need to pay less attention.
This week we are practicing the final chapter of Seven – become stress free. The chapter invites all kinds of pauses (seven pauses a day for prayer). It encourages meals together. It demands we practice sabbath – resting from our activities (a struggle for a pastor, with that whole preaching thing).
During stress, I fall into a pattern of analyzing and attempting to fix the problem. These tasks often need to happen, but I get consumed. The problem becomes my sole focus. I need a reminder to break from fixing life and focus on the meaning of life.
… of course I still stress… but the pause gives me wisdom to move past problems and toward my purpose.