Go Slow

Tuesday, April 29, 2014 @ 2:37 PM

I recently saw the movie "42" about Jackie Robinson's incredibly inspiring 1947 debut in the "white–only" major baseball league. African American reporter, Wendell Smith, is assigned to chronicle Robinson's experience and help him, especially when it comes to fielding questions from white reporters. Encouraging him to anticipate the questions ahead of time, to be ready for them, Smith says, "You know how when you're at the plate, you wanna see the ball come in slow? Well, you wanna see these questions come in slow, too."

It reminded me that there's a lot about life that comes at us fast. We move fast…text fast, eat fast, talk fast, work fast, and live fast. When we do this, we miss stuff—really important stuff. We miss moments of connection with a loved one. We miss the nuanced tone of voice when a friend says, "I'm fine," but they're really not. We miss the vulnerability stirring in our own hearts because it's uncomfortable, so we move on quickly. Too quickly.

Spend anytime on our weekends or in our groups and you may hear a gentle, "Slow down" or "Go slow". What does this look like? It may involve any or all of the following more than once:

  • taking a deep breath
  • talking more slowly
  • lowering our tone of voice
  • naming emerging emotions
  • expressing those emotions

It's grounding to hear someone say "go slow" in a moment of pain or confusion. It gives us permission to not rush things and pull it all together, which is what we're used to doing because we or others are uncomfortable. It reminds us to connect to what's happening inside—what our hearts are telling us.

Each day I can make this choice. I can choose to go fast or slow down. In the slowing down I find more connection, more authenticity, and ultimately, more life. What will you choose today? I wanna see the ball come in slow.