Living in a 5 second world
I am the queen of multi-tasking. Before the age of getting my eyebrows done, I kept a pair of tweezers in the car to pluck a few hairs at the stoplight. I love reading, but it is SO difficult for me to actually sit down and read because it requires me to do only one activity at a time. I never just sit and watch a show. I mean like never. Sure, I watch TV- but only when I am cooking, cleaning, working out, or folding laundry. I hate only doing one thing at a time. It feels so…inefficient.
I read somewhere that multi-tasking is actually a poor way to work because quality drastically decreases, but I try to blot that from my mind because efficiency is something I take pride in. Raised in a culture where fast and furious is the norm, I am a true product of my society in this way. I can cross twenty things off of my to-do list a day, and still find time at the end of the day to soak in a bath. If I were to measure myself based off of the ten-point scale of efficiency that the world gives, I would be at least an 8. Maybe even a 9.
Being efficient causes me to work faster, get more done, and (commendably) use all of the hours in the day to be productive.
It also causes me to be late for everything, cut conversations short, and miss responding to texts and messages for days. Which begs the question- is being efficient standing in the way of healthy, present lives?
Dare I say it- being efficient is standing in the way of being effective.
I can’t be naive or optimistic enough to claim this problem with efficiency before effectiveness just over secular society. The Bride of Christ, although beautiful, is flawed and also often holds to this mentality.
Hence handing out tracts instead of sitting on the curb to hear someone’s story.
It seems we have the tendency to boast about numbers more than we have the heart to walk in the nitty gritty of everyday life with those around us.
Someone mentioned the other day that Jesus was the most inefficient person.
He spent the first 30 years of his God-man life doing carpentry, for crying outloud!
He took the time to heal one on one, when he could have snapped his fingers and the whole crowd could be made whole. He spoke life into the broken around him, when he could have just touched them and moved on. He walked places instead of riding on a donkey. He took the long way getting to the cities and towns he was journeying to. He waited 3 days to heal Lazarus.
Jesus was a 5 second guy in a 1 second world.
If we, as true disciples of Christ, walk in his footsteps, what does this mean in the context of the now? We look at Martha, who was rushing around, making sure dinner was perfect for her perfect guest. In this story, Jesus tells her to slow down, for she was distracted by many things. He then applauds Mary for slowing her pace down enough to admire the One thing- the only thing- Jesus Christ himself.
Hear me when I say that busyness is not always bad, but rather, slow intentionality is always good. Juggling the different hats we put on during a daily basis is a skill that is necessary, and I by no means wish to swing so far on the pendulum to banish all activity.
But perhaps slowing down enough to be effective is far more Christ like than hurrying up to be efficient.
And maybe, just maybe, being present is a beautiful form of worship.