slow: learning to slow for grace when you’re battling life’s problems

Sap rises slow as fresh green fingers probe their way through darkened soil, released from chilled slumber, eager to embrace the light.

Yet here I sit, made winter-numb, running on empty, ready to hibernate. Deep inside I ache to hide, retreat, and I smile at the irony of earth coming alive to spring while I crave a season of blissful somnolence. Oh let me sleep and waken to brighter things!

Maybe you feel unprepared for all that lies ahead of you, or all this day is asking you to do? Maybe your one wish is to press pause on life’s busyness? Me too, my friend.

Now as I straddle hope and discouragement, I sense a gentle invitation within to slow my anxious thoughts, still my weary soul in God’s presence, and seek the calming peace only He can give us.

I sense a gentle invitation within to seek the calming peace only God can give us Click To Tweet

I have been riding on the wings of other people’s prayers, unable to fully articulate my feelings, face up to obvious inadequacies or admit to having a hurting heart.

So I come to my Lord now, bearing a cup of emptiness, weakness, questions and pain, because only He can replenish, heal and restore what is damaged, broken or lost in our souls and bring back hope, joy and wonder again.

Only God can replenish, heal and restore what is damaged, broken or lost in our souls Click To Tweet

Can I slow down?

Even now, as my heart races fast

and time passes in a blur, thoughts

whirl dervish-like in this hamster wheel

of a mind— even now—can I slow down

enough to pause and ponder, make room

for wonder?

Can I begin to rest a restless frame

as I sit and breathe in Gilead’s balm

and scent a soothing sound, running

soft as water, seeking stones to flow

and tumble over?

Is it possible to slow life’s racing

stream, hold on to reality but be

rooted deep in peace, discover

ribbons of rest threading through all

of this mess?

Yes and yes again repeats a sweet

refrain, as a voice of calm penetrates

my aching heart. Yes here, yes now

and always, my dear child, you can slow

to the rhythms of my grace without

losing anything

©joylenton2017

Let’s try to be still inside when life gets frantic, to pause and make space for wonder, look for green shoots of grace appearing, pushing up through the darkness of our circumstances.

Let's try to be still inside when life gets frantic, to pause and make space for wonder Click To Tweet

I’m joining my five-minute-friday poetic thoughts in community over at Kate Motaung’s site. You’ll be blessed and encouraged by reading the great posts being shared. Just click here to join us there.  🙂

10 Comments

    1. Me too, Jo! It can so easily become sidelined when tasks, duties and obligations drain energy and life out of us. Yet in the deliberate seeking of wonder we become rewarded beyond all expectations. May wonder return as you slow and ready yourself to receive, and may it be a hallmark of the week ahead for you, my friend. 🙂 x

  1. Joy, your voice is so soothing and imagery so vivid I feel I’m there with you watching for those sprouts of grace. Thank you for your healing words. They are good for the soul ❤️

    1. Mandy, I’m so pleased you found these words soothing to your soul. I hesitated a bit in wrestling them to the page, because they arose from a dark place, but my hope and prayer is for them to speak to others. Bless you, sweet friend. May you have a wonder-filled weekend! x <3

  2. THIS: “So I come to my Lord now, bearing a cup of emptiness, weakness, questions and pain, because only He can replenish, heal and restore what is damaged, broken or lost in our souls and bring back hope, joy and wonder again.” I’m in the 6 spot this week.

    1. Tara, it’s so lovely how you always find a nugget to take away with you! I’m sorry for being way too weary at the moment to keep up with my usual blog reading/commenting, but I hope to be able to catch up with your post if possible. Bless you for being here, my friend. xo

  3. Dear Joy, Thank you for sharing from the deep places again. As I send my prayers up for you, I find myself in weariness also, as my body cries “stop!” after more recent activity than usual. These words echo my heart’s cry, as I listen also to hear Him say:

    “Yes here, yes now
    and always, my dear child, you can slow
    to the rhythms of my grace without
    losing anything”

    I am grateful that Jesus is speaking to and for you through these longs days of hard, my friend! May He continue to hold you and soothe every aching part. Love and Hugs to you! xoxo

    1. Dear Bettie, I’m so sorry to hear how you are suffering similarly. It’s a stretch for these broken bodies of ours to do more than usual, isn’t it? My hope and prayer is for you to be mightily strengthened in the stillness as you rest, become warmed and refreshed by God’s great Love, given grace for all you need to do and wisdom to know what can be left or delegated to others. I am truly thankful for your continued prayers for both of us and looking forward to receiving God’s soothing, healing touch in the days and weeks ahead. Blessings, love and hugs to you! xoxo

  4. Joy, this is beautiful! The poem invites me to relax, to give my burdens to God and to let his mercy and grace wash over me. We CAN slow down even if it seems we can’t. Your poem really spells that out for us.

    Many blessings to you dear poet/sister/friend! xoxo

    1. Gayl, how kind of you to offer me such sweet encouragement! I also need to heed the words I have been given, because I tire and wilt so easily. Yet how ingrained it can be in all of us to want to just keep pressing on and neglecting to rest as much as we should do. May you have a blessed, restful weekend dear poet/sister/friend! xoxo

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