Spiritual Disciplines of a Leader: Eliminating Hurry

Camber McKenzie June 17, 2019

This is part 2 of our summer series, The Spiritual Disciplines of a Leader. 

Have you ever felt like you keep
saying “I don’t have enough time?” Me too.

I was reading The Blue Book where Jim
Branch records a conversation between Dallas Willard and John Ortberg that rocked me.

long after moving to Chicago, I called a wise friend to ask for some spiritual
direction. I described the pace of life in my current ministry. The church
where I serve tends to move at a fast clip. I also told him about our rhythms
of family life: we are in the van-driving, soccer-league, piano-lesson,
school-orientation-night years. I told him about the present condition of my
heart, as best I could discern it. What did I need to do, I asked him, to be
spiritually healthy?


must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life,’ he said at last.

long pause.

I’ve written that one down,’ I told him, a little impatiently. ‘That’s a good
one. Now, what else is there?’ I had many things to do, and this was a
long-distance call, so I was anxious to cram as many units of spiritual wisdom
into the least amount of time possible. Another long pause.

is nothing else,’
he said. ‘You must ruthlessly
eliminate hurry from your life.’”

The idea of ruthlessly eliminating
hurry from my life was more than just a good thought; I wanted to actually try
it. So I did.

I cut out “I don’t have time for
_____” from my thinking.
When it popped up, I would counter
with “All I have is time.” Time is the best gift we have, and we can’t take it
for granted. Little shifts in our everyday thinking can lead to bigger changes
than we expect!

I practiced ruthlessly eliminating
hurry, but I still needed more to help me be a healthy person. I needed other spiritual
disciplines that could help me stay grounded and hopeful in the highs, lows,
and everyday life.

Hurry was eliminated, but I found
myself juggling a full-time job, full-time graduate school, and being a Young
Life leader. And man, was I exhausted! I could check out and watch a movie or
sleep in on weekends, but nothing helped me feel truly rested. I was burned
out, emotionally and spiritually.


Are you
tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion?
Come to me. Get away with me and
you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me
and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.
I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and
you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.
” – Matthew 11:28-30 (The Message)

Jesus invites us to take time to get
away, to recover, to take a real rest. Unforced rhythms of grace? Living freely
and lightly? I want that!

If you feel the same way, you’ll want
to check back here as we give you a few resources on building a “spiritual
toolbox” with different practices to help us connect with God and each other in
deeper ways.

Want to put this into practice right

Start noticing when you feel rushed
or overwhelmed in life. Eliminate that sense of hurry, and ask God to help you
focus on the person or situation in front of you.

What spiritual practices are helping
you or healing you right now? Leave a comment below or email us here.

Written by Camber McKenzie.

Camber McKenzie is a volunteer Young Life leader in Steamboat Springs, CO, and has an MBA from Regent University. She gets excited about books, impromptu dance parties, and doing anything outdoors.


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