“Local authorities said careless driving and excessive speed were the causes of the accident.” Sentences like this one are reported in newspapers all too frequently. Most drivers know that going too fast can be dangerous, yet thousands die every year from needless accidents.
In his book, Margins, medical doctor Richard Swenson argues that to live a full life, we need to use all ‘four gears”:
- Overdrive – this is used when we need extra time or energy for our responsibilities
- Drive – this gear is for our normal daily activities, work and play
- Low – we need this gear for forming relationship with other people
- Park – when we are stopped, we can examine our soul and develop our relationship with God
Swenson’s view is that we need to use all four gears for a well-rounded life, yet we often don’t slow down enough to develop relationships with God and others. The world around us forces us to rev the engine at higher speeds and makes us feel guilty when we ease up. No one can develop deep friendships when they are always on the go.
One of the first things the shepherd of our soul does is to find us a place of rest:
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters. (Psalm 23:2)
If you’ve been racing around like crazy, perhaps it’s time to slow down and walk beside the quiet waters.