Here's a post I drafted, but didn't publish a long time ago:
The other day, our kids wanted to walk home from school despite the temperature being only about 18 degrees Fahrenheit. It usually takes about 20 or 30 minutes for them to get home. So when it was getting to be almost an hour after school ended and we still hadn't seen them on such a cold day, my wife and I started getting a little worried. I drove a block and a half down our road and turned the first corner to find my son, daughter, and the neighbor girl standing on the side of the road huddled in a little group. They piled into the car, happy for the ride the rest of the way home.
When I asked what had taken so long, they said that each time they got cold, they would stop and have the neighbor girl read to them from her story book. Apparently, that's what was going on when I found them.
I drew a parallel to my own life in their behavior. When it gets tough--or cold as it was for the kids--I think my inclination is sometimes to stop moving forward, maybe even withdraw, and seek comfort in some pleasurable activity that takes my mind away from the reality of my concerns. For the kids, it was stopping to read. For me it's something mind numbing like angry birds or Facebook.
While I appreciate the value of stopping to smell the roses, I'm not sure it's the wisest choice in sub-freezing weather. In fact, I think it's probably the opposite of wise. My pre-school aged son is studying opposites. Now, what's the opposite of wise? . . .oh yeah: Stupid!
Stopping to smell the roses when
a) there are no roses in bloom, so you imagine up some to yourself and read about them, and
b) you have somewhere to go and the conditions you face could prove detrimental to your success and harmful to your health. . .
...In this case, stopping to smell the roses is the stupid thing to do.
I appreciate the kids' logic; and I've exercised it from time to time myself. "I need some me time to recharge and move on. . ." It's a real thing, and there are occasions when it's the perfect answer. But to get to where you're going, you've got to keep walking--ESPECIALLY when it's cold!
So Cal Day 4- Church
3 weeks ago