THEME: Jesus is calling me to slow down.
GRACE: Lord, let me hear Your voice as I make space to listen.
- In a journal, note the day, time, and place you’re sitting.
- Open with a few moments of silence. Rest, and breathe deeply.
- Complete the following sentence in your journal: Today, I feel ________________.
- Read these words slowly (aloud or silently):
The Lord is gracious and righteous;
our God is full of compassion.
The Lord protects the unwary;
when I was brought low, he saved me.
Return to your rest, my soul,
for the Lord has been good to you. (Psalm 116:5-7, NIV)
- Pause for a few moments of silence.
- Choose one of the following practices.
Option 1: Margin [5-30 minutes]
Margin is a simple, yet difficult, practice that helps us intentionally live within the limits God has given us. Whether it involves our financial, mental, physical or emotional health, God desires for us to enjoy the freedom of living within our means. By intentionally creating margin, we allow ourselves the “breathing room” to enjoy the life God has given us, instead of constantly yearning for more.
One of the greatest barriers to margin is probably in your pocket or purse right now– your smartphone. Although these devices are helpful, they tempt us by distracting us from the present moment.
Today, our practice involves a few simple steps:
- Use your smartphone to download a screen-time tracking app. Suggested links are below.
- Set up the app and begin tracking your daily screen time.
Once you’re finished, open your journal and answer these questions: How does my interaction with technology affect my relationship with God? Is there anything God might be calling me to do in response?
Option 2: Margin [30-60 minutes]
Take a few moments to download and set up a screen-time tracking app for your smartphone. Instructions are listed in the practice above.
Once you are finished, read the following quote and answer the questions below in your journal:
One sign that I am violating my own nature in the name of nobility is a condition called burnout. Though usually regarded as the result of trying to give too much, burnout in my experience results from trying to give what I do not possess– the ultimate in giving too little! Burnout is a state of emptiness, to be sure, but it does not result from giving all I have: it merely reveals the nothingness from which I was trying to give in the first place. -Parker Palmer, Let Your Life Speak
- Have you ever experienced a season of burnout? If so, how do you feel about the idea that it results from trying to give out of “nothingness”?
- Is there anywhere in your life you might be close to burnout? Perhaps mental, spiritual, physical, or emotional exhaustion?
- What are some practical things you could say “no” to, in order to create more margin for rest and simplicity? If you can’t find any, ask God!
- Summary: Write a brief summary (five sentences or less) of what impacted you most about the practice of Margin.
- Closing Prayer: Lord, let me hear Your voice as I make space to listen.
Questions? Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org