Look small and live small

By Dave Henning / June 7, 2024

“We look small and live small and seek to move slowly not for its own sake but as an attempt to let our humanity boundary us.  And from that place — that small, boundaried place — comes grandeur.”- Sara Hagerty

“And my God will supply every need of yours, according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”- Philippians 4:19 (ESV)

“We must be ready to allow ourselves to be interrupted by God.”- Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together

Sara Hagerty concludes Chapter 9 of The Gift of Limitations with the observation that when our life butts into God’s plan for us, God crosses our paths and cancels our plans.  Above all, Sara adds, that interruption comes in the form of weakness.  When we cannot slow ourselves, God slows us.

Consequently, the real part of partnering with God occurs when we choose to take steps toward slowing ourselves.  Steps toward finding the boundaries and thriving within them.  Even before we sustain an injury.  And things surface only when our heart rate slow enough for us to hear what’s underneath it.

In conclusion, Sara asserts, we need to see tired as a gift.  Because we only know rest when we lean into the weariness of our labor.  Tired reveals the limits of our skin, time, and energy.  Most significantly, these limits teach us to lean into God.  For He shares Himself with us.

Furthermore, Sara underscores, the nos that feel the least Christian often form us into being listeners of God.  Rather than our own impulses.  Thus, to lean into our limits, we must first address our unwillingness to go rest.  To consider what our stubborn refusals might tell us about hour hearts.

As Ruth Haley Barton writes in Sacred Rhythms:

“If we dig down a little deeper, we may see that our unwillingness to practice sabbath is really an unwillingness to live within the limits of our humanity, to honor our finiteness.”

We live and feel the fence God builds around us.  And as we grow, we eventually embrace it.

Today’s question: What Bible verses help you look small and live small?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Murky thoughts and questions”

About the author

Dave Henning

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