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                                               Slow Down...

Good afternoon dear reader & welcome to my world & one where March 2017 finished. Over the last very busy week my journey has been disrupted a number of times by what could be construed as frustrations. I prefer to call them learning curves, where we slow down & smell the roses.

During such periods of discouragement one often feels determined by circumstances, something we cannot help feeling because powerful forces beyond our control are causing it. This is why our response to discouragement is often passive ~ we sit, weighed down with a heavy spiritual listlessness looking at the world through the grey, bleak lenses of fear.

Yes, discouragement is a species of fear. It is a loss of courage. We do not always recognize discouragement as fear because it can feel like hopelessness with a side of cynicism. We might even call it depression because we have an accumulation of fears intermingled, & this could be or may appear somewhat undefined. And, of course, if we are discouraged, we feel depressed. 2 We feel like giving up, which is something I prefer not to do…

Yesterday, I also came across the following story:                                                Years ago, a farmer & his son were travelling by cart to the city to sell their vegetables. The dad relaxed while his son shouted at the ox to go faster. As they passed a friend's house the older man insisted they stop & visit. Later, back on the road, he took the slow scenic route. At dusk he stopped for the night. Frustrated & angry his son said, 'You are more interested in sunsets & flowers than making money.'

Next morning as they travelled, a blinding flash split the clouds, followed by a low rumble, then the sky grew black. 'If we had hurried we would have missed the storm' grumbled the boy. His dad replied, 'Slow down son, you will last longer'. By late afternoon they reached a hill overlooking the city. After staring down at it for what seemed like an eternity, the boy finally turned & said 'I see what you mean, Dad.' Slowly & silently they turned around & walked away from what remained of Hiroshima.

The principal point being of course, no one knows what is around the next corner. The irritating traffic jam, the unexpected phone call, are perhaps just part of life & something perhaps we should come to expect. So what now dear reader? Perhaps we could learn to trust more, complain less, worry less & rush less. 2 Perhaps we will last longer.

As I suggested last week, I have learned several lessons over the years & I am continually learning. In fact I have been reminded of a few, again, this last week; & probably will have to learn more again.

I was also reminded of the following this week: “I am ready to unload all the distraction of worry, doubt & unfounded fears. Really, there is no fear which is founded. All is well, there is a cornucopia of opportunity laid out before us all if we just lightly step forward & accept the moment, & ourselves, as we are. 3

Thank you for taking the time to be with me once again. I hope my journey may again encourage you also. This is Kenn Butler in Paradise, Nelson, with my best wishes for your week ahead.

2  Bob Gass & Radio Rhema Word for You Today ~ Friday March 31st 2017
3  From the singer / songwriter, Havilah

Kenn Butler
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