Not all painful situations have quick fixes or simple explanations. A choice to pause in the hurry can help us see better. To see life better. The journey, the destination, the decision, the person inside us, the person beside us.
Pause refuses to be controlled by the uneven surfaces of hurry. Pause doesn’t balance out the craziness of this world or the wild calling God has placed on our lives. Too much is all around us. We feel it. We know it. We hear it. But amid it all, along with our invitation to walk with leanings toward various life interests and opportunities, we can turn on the red light just for a moment. We can stop the rush. We can be still and know.
1. Pause is a choice we make. There are times, unfortunately, when a pause is forced upon us. Some of those personal examples are included in my reflections in this chapter. But even when we must wait for an answer or a test result or a recovery, a healthy pause is choosing to view the waiting room as a weight room which gives us new strength. We should deliberately select the slow pace as a blessing—whether waiting during a dreaded time or an exciting possibility.
2. Pause is not a method of escape or avoidance. We must also remember this is not endorsing a tendency to deny reality. Some people like to run away and avoid difficulties. To pause is to bring healing, to prepare, to rest, to resist our modern hurry, to build strength (weight room) while on delay (waiting room). It is not running away; it is napping before the run toward. It is not pretending all is well when things aren’t well at all; it is going to a well to become refreshed when it is time to move forward.
3. Pause can be done briefly and over a longer amount of time. Some of our moments of pause are brief. We take a few steps away, glance out a window, breathe deeply and slowly, relax our tense muscles, and imagine positive outcomes. We turn everything off and nap. But some are longer. We take a sabbath from work to obtain new strength, new thoughts, new energy. We take a few days or a week or a month or a few months to rejuvenate—or, sometimes to recover. Life isn’t easy. We need these moments even when we don’t know we need them.