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Slow Your Roll, Son

September 5, 2013

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This summer, I’ve taken an unexpected affinity to fishing. On average, I’ve gone twice a month, all season long. Don’t get me wrong, I’m pretty mediocre at it. I’ve caught maybe half a dozen to sub-10 in total. But I enjoy it. In fact, I’ve gone solo 90% of the time. Give me my Pandora, a cool breeze, favorable weather and maybe a decent cigar and I’m good to go. I sit there attentively for 4-5 hours, waiting for a proper bite to reel in my prize. It’s time consuming, but revitalizing for me.

Ever since I was a young child, I’ve been told that I am a patient individual. I think it reflects my general demeanor. I’m typically laid back, I don’t get too concerned if things don’t go to plan immediately, and I pride myself in my ability to adjust on the fly (The biggest deviation is when I have to wait in line for something. I hate standing in line to make a purchase). But when I look back over the past few months, I’m beginning to see an overarching theme that has intensified recently; and it seems to have it’s origins going back the better part of a decade.

Many things in my life have turned out to be a waiting game. Things like my career, my love life, and my church have all had multi-year “delays” from the point I initially wanted to seek change and the point where it came to fruition. In fact, in many categories, these situations are still in flux. I won’t lie to you, it can get tiring after a while.

Last weekend, I went fishing and caught nothing for the first time in months. I wasn’t expecting a big haul because I never catch more than a couple but it had been a while since I came up completely empty handed. I was frustrated and I started to get agitated about all the things I have had to “wait for”. I’ve waited all night, isn’t it time I got my fish!? So once I ran out of bait, I packed up in a huff and set off on my hour-long drive home. And it was then, 5 minutes away from my exit, I get pulled over and hit with a speeding ticket. It was my 4th speeding violation in a period of 4 months (thankfully it is also the only one that may result in points against my record).

With my vexation at a boiling point I suddenly came across a moment of clarity. I realized my timetable has always been distorted. Just because I want and feel ready for something doesn’t mean it has to happen right away. And here I am complaining over a few months or years or whatever, when it’s not like I had to  wander the desert for 40 years, or anything remotely close to that. Plus, looking back, in many cases it’s clear that had I gotten what I wanted  when I wanted it, my life would not have been any better for it. There was evident Providence and Grace in those times.

I felt like God was telling me to “slow down”, to chill out and relax – to have Faith. I think this is especially hard for me to do sometimes because I feel I have been patient. It’s what I do! I can wait things out for days, months, heck even years if it calls for it. But sure enough, sooner or later I do begin to get anxious. I do begin to question. I do begin to want immediate answers because deep down, I feel like I’ve paid my dues. But you know what? Maybe I could wait a little longer for that fish after all.

And then I was immediately hit with yet another epiphany. Maybe catching the fish shouldn’t even be the goal. What if I never do catch a fish? Will the wait, the journey, the experience have been all for naught? I’m no pastor but knowing what I do know about my relationship with God, that probably isn’t the case. It’s then I realized I don’t need to just slow down, but to also pay attention and enjoy the ride. Maybe I’ll catch that fish, maybe I won’t. Maybe I’ll reel in a crab or a shark or maybe my line will snag and be lost altogether. Come what may, I guess I’m learning to love  both the wait and the God I’m waiting with.

But of course, it’s probably gonna take some time.

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Me, a few years ago, drinking “Drank”: “Slow Your Roll”

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. treeli permalink
    September 6, 2013 12:06 am

    Deep

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