Tuesday, September 12, 2006

August 15th of last year, I took Beej to the hospital to find out what was wrong. We had been told it was walking pneumonia, before that, we had him treated and re-checked for a lump under his right arm. On our way into the hospital my mind was racing... overwhelmed with the possibilities. I had no clue what was wrong, just knew that we had to get him help for healing.

For as long as I can remember, I have walked fast. Easily one would say that I was in a hurry... all the time. I have confessed to the same. When we hike as a family, I am out in front. To be honest, if I wasn't out front, I feel like I am out of place. I cannot explain this. I can say that I know many would believe it was a pride thing, a competitive thing. I cannot say for sure that it isn't. I just know that it happens without my giving it a thought.

In the airport whether with family or with my team of missionaries it is the same. My mind is focused on the details ahead and making sure that we are where we are supposed to be at the right time... early if possible.

The thing is, when I try to walk with Deanna for exercise, I can barely keep up. Perhaps it is the fact that it is exercise, and that we do not have to be anywhere at any particular time, I don't know for sure. I just know that tiny little thing has another gear for exercise, and it makes me tired just thinking about it.

I suppose it is all too easy when my mind gets focused on upcoming plans, to forge ahead without enough thought for those who might need me to pay attention along the way. The result? Without intention, they get left behind... gasping for breathe in an attempt to keep up.

What is necessary here, is for me to release some of the foreword thoughts. To share with those with me, what is ahead, and how we can better face the battle as a team. For far too long, I have been a deep thinker. I am used to having my thoughts race ahead, like my physical body in an airport. Keeping it in check has been like holding back the 11th leak in the dam when my other ten fingers are already occupied.

That day, on the way into the hospital, was no different. I had to get him help. I had to see that he was tended to as quickly as possible. I was on my way to seeing him healed.

Then I heard a meek voice. Panting as he walked, fighting for breath as he asked, "Dad, can you slow down?" I turned to see him several paces behind, hunched forward, and trying to keep up. My heart dropped. How could I have become so otherwise focused that the one in need, the one I was fighting for, the one I was trying to tend to was the one I left behind as my mind and body raced ahead?

I returned to him. I wanted to pick him up and run. I wanted to hold him and offer a thousand apologies for my insensitivity.

I fear that too many times I do this, even in ministry. The Father gives me a task. I race out ahead in an attempt to get it done. Partially because I am unsure how to tackle the issue. I forge ahead sure in my mind that the answers will become evident if I keep pushing forward. Soon, I hear the voice of the Son, calling me back, trying to rein me in so that I will take time for those in need... those I have been called to minister to along the way, but failed to see as my focus was blinded by my attention to hurry.

The embrace of ministry to that one in need is indeed sweet. Unfortunately, too often I attempt to fill my diet with ego-centric thoughts that do more to disrupt the Kingdom than build it up.

It is important that I learn to slow down and count the cost, before leaving those in need, behind! Being first to arrive doesn't make me a winner. Being there to understand anothers need and doing something about it, does.


"Illusion of me"... I am returning to your friends church this Sunday night, and would love to meet you and pray for you.


At 10:20 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Brent for sharing
Dearest Lauren/Illusion of me.
You are in my prayers. I live in Indpls., In . And I pray for your sobriety and staying clean.
Should you ever fall, please turn to God, He will pick you up.
I pray every day you wake up, give Thanks for another day of being clean
and pray for Gods strength to see you through another day. Take one day at a time.
As BJ's life has touched you, your life has touched mine. I am greatful you found this site, I pray for you and know that , one day, your experiences will touch another and they to will be inspired to clean up and turn their life around.
Bless you child!!!
Keep strong and when you feel week pray for Gods strength.
Love, prayers and many blessings to you my child
In Jesus name I am praying for you and with you.

At 10:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tears once again fill my eyes as I read "Illusion of me"'s post. God continues to amaze me every day how he prepares a heart, places someone there to plant the seed (Brent & Deanna) and leaves it up to that person to take the leap. Illusion of me, you have taken that leap and your life will never be the same!! God bless you and your biological mother. Be proud of the courage it took to call her and share this newfound faith, love and praise for God.

I, too, will continue to pray for you and encourage you to meet with Brent when he is back in town. I know I would jump at the chance to meet with him and Deanna if they were to come to Wisconsin! (hint, hint)

Brent, I am also a fast walker, all the time. It takes a conscious effort to slow myself down when walking with my boys so that we can actually have a conversation. Other times, it's a "hurry up guys" which it seems I have to say way too often, both because we're on our way somewhere and because they tend to poke slowly. Thanks for the reminder to slow down and be present in the moment, whether walking, praying or living.

Amen. Blessings, Tina

At 11:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. Thanks for the reminder to slow down. Thank you for the very personal and touching image. Praying for you continually.

Laura O.

At 1:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

God Bless you,

Greenfield, Indiana

At 2:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

God gifts us each differently. Some are natural leaders, charging ahead, forging new ground. Others are nurturing, taking extra time to make sure none are left behind. That's why we need each other, to compliment and create a whole body which is the bride of the Jesus, the church. All of us are needed to move the kingdom ahead. Each doing their part, keeping our eyes on Jesus. Trying to be somebody we are not designed to be is to distrust our Maker's design, isn't it? Not that we can't learn and appreciate our strengths and weaknesses, but can a hand be a foot? Well, yes it can try but progress is slowed because of it. bj knew this about you dad. Otherwise he would have continued to struggle to keep up. He knew your habits and simply reminded you he was slower. He understood your haste was for his benefit and because of your love for him.

Lauren, many people whom you will never see or know about are praising God for your decision and are praying for you!

At 3:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It has been a long time since I have left a comment but I continue to check the blog and comments of others. You all continue to bless me and so many others. Thank you for continuing to post. I continue to wear my Pray For BJ shirt (pink of course) and love having people stop me and ask about it. God continues using all of you for His glory. Be assured I continue to pray for all of you, especially this month as I am sure you are counting days to the first anniversary. You continue demonstrating "bearing the pain for the joy set before you". Thank you.

Love and blessings,

At 4:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Every minister needs to read your blog today. It is ironic that just before I logged onto this blog, I was discussing that our minister has yet to return my calls or my email --- for over two weeks -- with reminders. I am not upset, just feeling a need to reach somewhere else. This blog is that somewhere else. Then I am reminded that I, too, am guilty of not returning calls or not checking in and how it feels to be on the receiving end of this behavior. Thank you for grounding me and assisting me in realizing my role in hurrying to the finish of a race with no winners!

Heavenly Father, thank you for your message through Brent today. Thank you for reminding us not to run so fast that we don't embrace the now. Father, I pray for a slower, yet more enjoyable pace that we may see the need of others and REALLY tend without rush.


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