Monday, October 09, 2006


Signs, originally uploaded by chanchanchepon.
Yesterday, I had lunch with my old friend John Hancox and his family. It was really cool to catch up on all of the things going on in our lives, and to just share in some laughter with one another.

After lunch, I noticed his 15 month old son started crying. John and Melissa explained to me that he is not accustomed to going without sleep for so long. He usually has a nap at 10 AM, and a second nap at 2PM. He didn't get those naps in and he was a little irritated.

He understood his body was trying to tell him something about rest. We need rest, but we don't take it. Our body cries out to us that we need rest, but we ignore its pleas. This weekend, I went rafting with some friends, and we were all tired. Unlike my friends, I refused to listen to my body. They took naps. I stayed awake. I thought we could all watch a movie and hang out. They thought we could all go to our respective homes and get showers and go to bed. They were listening to their bodies, but I was not.

As they left my house, I walked up my stairs, and I realized, "Hey, maybe they were thinking a little more clearly than me--I'm tired--I should get some sleep." So I stayed up for another three hours before my heart, mind, and body could finally agree to slip away into slumber.

When we live in a culture that values efficiency and productivity, it is hard to listen to our bodies. Sometimes it is good to ignore our bodies when we have a penchant for laziness, but I feel like I often miss the warning signs.

I need to be more like John's son. Because when I don't listen to my body, and I try to do more than I should, I end up being irritable and cranky and frustrated easily. I also find that when I push myself beyond these limits it becomes very challenging to continue walking in the Spirit. Sometimes that challenge can be good and faith stretching, but other times, it is just an important reminder that we need balance.

Although, I find myself able to handle more than most people, I still need to realize my limits.

I need to look at the signs that come up in my life, and not just the physiological ones. Kind of like this picture. Here is a man offering people free bibles. He's standing in front of a stop sign. Maybe this picture is meant to remind me (and you) that no matter how busy our life gets, we need to have space for certain things. Maybe we need to just stop for a bit, and spend some time allowing the Sacred Text to shape our lives.

Maybe we just need to stop, and take an interesting picture like this one.

Maybe we just need to stop, look, and listen to what God is trying to tell us through a variety of sources.

What do you need to do right now?

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