Something that I’ve been reflecting upon more and more recently, is the term ‘slow living’. I think it’s something that we hear being talked about a lot, and we can perhaps all agree that it’s something that we crave. David and I both enjoy so many of the same things, including living simply and consciously. It’s something that we try to implement in our lives and relationship daily. Plus we own a narrowboat called Dylan, and with a speed limit of 4 mph on the canals, life doesn’t get much slower than that!
In today’s fast-paced world, where busyness seems to be the norm, the concept of slow living has gained a lot of attention. A quick search on Google will bring up an endless amount of articles on slow living! But one question that I’ve found myself wondering is what exactly does slow living mean, especially for those who follow the Christian faith? Slow living isn’t just about slowing down our daily activities; it’s a mindful and intentional approach to life that aligns well with Christian values.
One thing that slow living encourages us to focus on is quality over quantity, to savour each moment, and to be present in every aspect of life. This idea resonates deeply with the teachings of the Bible. The concept of sabbath, for example, makes us aware of the importance of rest, reflection, and worship. Slow living as a Christian involves incorporating these into everyday life. After all, even God rested on the seventh day, which we read in the Book of Genesis.
“And on the seventh day God finished his work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work that he had done.”Genesis 2:2.
Slow living reflects the importance of rest, reflection, and time for God.
One key aspect of slow living is simplification. This mirrors the Biblical call to find contentment in all circumstances, just like what the apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 4:12-13. By embracing simplicity and minimising material distractions (especially in a world that is so focused on materialism), we can focus more on our spiritual growth and connection with God.
“I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation.”Philippians 4:12-13.
Slow living aligns with finding contentment and prioritising what truly matters.
Another important element of slow living is mindfulness. This practice encourages being fully present in the moment, which aligns with the idea of dwelling in God’s presence. Psalm 46:10 reminds us to be still. When we take the time to be mindful, we can better appreciate the beauty of God’s creation and recognise His presence in our lives.
“Be still, and know that I am God.”Psalm 46:10.
Being present helps us to appreciate God’s creation and His role in our lives.
Practising gratitude is also important to both slow living and Christian faith. In 1 Thessalonians 5:18, we are urged to “give thanks in all circumstances.” Slow living encourages us to cultivate an attitude of gratitude by taking time to reflect on our blessings, which can lead to a deeper appreciation of God’s grace and provision, and all that He has done, is doing, and will do in our lives.
Slow living encourages us to be thankful, deepening our appreciation for God’s grace and all that He is doing in our lives.
Why not try making a list right now of five things that you are thankful to God for? Perhaps you could make this into a daily habit at the end of each day.
Slow living provides an opportunity for us as Christians to prioritise relationships as well. Jesus himself modelled the importance of spending meaningful time with others, just like we read in Mark 6:31. By nurturing our connections with loved ones and being intentional, we can create a sense of community that mirrors fellowship.
“Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”Mark 6:31.
Prioritising relationships, helps to create a sense of community that mirrors fellowship.
Connect with God
Slow living as a Christian is about aligning our lives with our faith. It’s about recognising that busyness and constant striving can sometimes pull us away from our relationship with God. This is definitely something that I have felt myself. But by embracing a slower pace, we can deepen our journey of faith, connect with God, and live out the principles of love, kindness, and compassion that Jesus taught.
Slowing down can help to strengthen our journey of faith by helping us to prioritise spending time with God daily.
Finally, slow living as a Christian is a deliberate choice to step away from the frantic pace of modern life and to embrace a more intentional and meaningful way of living. By simplifying, practising mindfulness, nurturing gratitude, and prioritising our relationships, we can create a life that reflects our Christian faith and values. In the quiet moments of slow living, we can draw closer to God, find solace in His presence, and experience a profound sense of fulfilment that transcends the demands of the world around us.
In the quiet moments of slow living, we can experience a deep sense of fulfilment (something that only God can give) that goes beyond the demands of a busy world.
How can you start incorporating elements of slow living into your daily routine to strengthen your connection with God?
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