DayBreaks for 5/17/16 – The Speed God Walks
NOTE: Galen will be out of the office and traveling next week.
From the DayBreaks archive, May 2006:
On Wednesday mornings, I teach a bible study at a senior apartment complex. It’s a small group that gathers, but they’re tremendously faithful and very serious students of the Word. This bible study group is truly one of the highlights of my week every week! There is one lady that I get to help from her apartment to where we meet in the fireside room. She’s 92 years young, sharp as a tack, even if she’s a bit hard to understand because her voice is very gravelly. She moves very slowly – she uses a walker to get around in her apartment and I get her wheelchair ready for her and push her down to the meeting. I make sure and get there in plenty of time in order to allow for how slowly she moves.
I sometimes am a little impatient – although I don’t think I let it show. I try to imagine how it must be to be 92 years of age, with bones and muscles that creak and groan. I hope, that if I do live that long, that there will be someone who is loving and patient with me.
Theologian Kosuke Koyama described God in a wonderful way. As he reflected on his days spent in the peaceful rice fields of Thailand, he was moved to write these word: “God walks ‘slowly’ because he is love. If he is not love he would have gone much faster. Love has its speed. It is an inner speed. It is a spiritual speed. It is a different kind of speed from the technological speed to which we are accustomed…It goes on in the depth of our life, whether we notice or not, whether we are currently hit by storm or not, at three miles an hour. It is the speed we walk and therefore it is the speed the love of God walks.”
There’s a lot to contemplate in that paragraph:
FIRST: love moves slowly, and because God is love, He moves slowly. Why did God take 400 years before He led Israel out of Egypt? Why did He take thousands of years before sending Christ? Why has He waited so long to complete His plan for us and make all wrongs right? If I read scripture correctly, the answer is love: it is his love that leads to his patience, not willing that any should perish, but that all come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)
SECOND: Love has to move slowly in order to notice that which is beloved. When you’re moving at warp speed, you can’t notice the curl at the corner of the mouth that signifies happiness, the smell of someone’s hair, the wonder of their mind and thoughts. Love must give and receive – and those things both take time to give and receive wisely.
THIRD: Humans walk about 3 miles per hour – give or take a bit, depending on circumstances. How interesting that he says that love walks at 3 miles per hour. He’s suggesting that where we go, love goes…at 3 miles per hour. At least, this is to be the case for all believers – if God is within us then he moves with us…at 3 miles per hour.
He’s not in any rush to make His way through this day. Let’s not be trying to move at a greater speed than love demands.
Habakkuk 2:2-3 (NLT) – Then the LORD said to me, “Write my answer in large, clear letters on a tablet, so that a runner can read it and tell everyone else. But these things I plan won’t happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, wait patiently, for it will surely take place. It will not be delayed.”
PRAYER: How wonderful it is to know that You love us so unreservedly and so intimately! Thank you for taking the time to always be slow enough to notice us – our joys, our pains, our fears and our delights. Thank you for making the petals of each flower to delight us. Thank you for making people so vastly different and complex. Help us to take the time to walk slowly this day and see, and be, love wherever we go. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.