We often get frustrated with the speed at which God works in our lives (slow and steady). I suspect that, in part, it’s because we tend to interpret God’s ways in light of the speed at which we insist on living our lives (fast and hurried). The modern world is a very difficult place for developing an unrushed and unhurried spirituality. There’s little margin for contemplation. Little space for meditation. We want everything on the go. We’re addicted to the rush.
But Christianity isn’t like fast food. It’s not a drive-thru restaurant for a people so focused on getting to the next destination. Christian spirituality is more like planting an orchard. It takes time… years and decades—indeed, a lifetime. It takes endurance through all the seasons, reoccurring cycles of winter dormancy and summer life. It requires an unhurried, patient commitment—a virtue in the eternal Kingdom, but a heresy in a world baptized in the momentary rush. I think that’s why I love the biblical stories. They are so frustrating to people like me: The storms and waves batter our boats with an endless rush of wind and rain. All the while, Jesus quietly sleeps.
It’s a blessed frustration to me that God never seems to panic (though he does weep—a different matter altogether). But God never freaks out. And after we do, he rises to quiet the storm with his peace. Jesus not only tames the busy chaos, but he also teaches us the art of how to take naps in the middle of it. Jesus is the ultimate cultural heretic.