A Time to Stop — Morning Devotions - Hope 103.2

A Time to Stop — Morning Devotions

How cluttered is your life? We often rush to make new year's resolutions, but is one of them to slow down this year?

By Chris WittsSaturday 31 Dec 2022Morning Devotions with Chris WittsFaithReading Time: 1 minute

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I was interested to read from Dr John Calhoun. He was a research psychologist at the National Institute of Mental Health, and he set out to prove a theory that there were dangers in a population overcrowding. This is nothing new, is it? But what he did was rather unusual. He built a cage and he wanted to experiment with 100 and 60 mice. But what he decided to do was to increase that population of mice to 2200. Now it was a fairly good habitat, except, of course was grossly overcrowded. And the mice here were deprived of privacy. They had no time to be on their own. They couldn’t get out. And Dr Calhoun was interested to see how these mice would handle themselves in this very crowded environment.

Well, he watched as the colony of mice began to disintegrate. The adults formed groups of about a dozen mice and in these groups each adult mouse performed a particular role. There were there were no roles for healthy young mice, the males that once protected their territory withdrew from their leadership role. The females grew aggressive and forced out the young ones. The young ones became lazy.

They ate, drank, slept and groomed themselves, but it didn’t show any aggression. They failed to reproduce, and he noticed that after five years of this, every mouse in that colony had died, and I guess it was a fairly cruel thing to do. But this was an interesting experiment to see what happened. And the most complex activities for the mice, which were courtship and mating, actually stopped. And he was able to say that in in our complex activities of life, there was something worth examining.

So we’ve promised ourselves that, well, things will be different this year. You know, many of us are going to make New Year’s resolutions were going to be looking at ways of doing things, and one of the things we’ve probably said is I’m going to slow down a bit. I’m not going to be allowing my subject into that trap, and we’re not going to become sort of pushed into this crowded environment.

You know, we push too hard, we go too, fast, and there’s even that expression you might have heard called The tyranny of the urgent and that wraps its tentacles around us.

The Bible has something to say to us who are going too fast, and in Psalm 46:10, it says that we are required to stop and be still and know that there is God.

We need to stop this overcrowded schedule. All things will happen. We can lose our sense of priority and in fact, lose God in all this. We won’t hear God speaking to us in the quietness in the stillness. So there is a need for us to meet with God, to shut out the noise of the crowd, to be quiet and to really give him the time that he deserves. So what I’m talking about there is slowing down.

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It was the Carl Young who said that hurry is not of the devil, he said. Hurry is the devil and you can read in the Bible many, many occasions where Jesus withdrew. He went away on his own to a lonely place, and he prayed. He needed to do that. Because as you get away on your own and to get away from a crowd, we can actually hear God. As I said, Psalm 46:10 is a good one to remember. Be still and know that I am God.

I guess it’s easy to say that, but there are some practical things that you can do. Go for a walk and enjoy the scenery. If you’re having trouble sleep, talk to God about it. And if you’re having trouble there to not having enough time to do, things are important. Go to bed early, no TV. Take your lunch break at a park or a bench. Make time for yourself. And there’s another really interesting first from Psalm 127 and it says this in verse two and three. It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late and work your worried fingers to the bone. Don’t you know that God enjoys giving rest to those that he loves. So we need to understand that God can speak to us even though we are in this busy period and busy time. And in a busy world.

Let’s Pray

Well, Heavenly Father, we know that as we hurry, things can get out of hand. We lose our sense of perspective. Lord, just slow us down. Help us listen to your heartbeat. I pray this in the name of Jesus, amen.