Calgary is a fast-paced city in which it is easy to do little more than work and sleep. Stephen Covey in his popular book, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, says,
It’s incredibly easy to get caught up in an activity trap, in the busy-ness of life, to work harder and harder at climbing the ladder of success only to discover it’s leaning against the wrong wall.1
I must constantly be looking to see if I am putting my energies in the correct places. I don’t want to climb the ladder of success only to find that I have sacrificed my emotional health; my spiritual health; my family. Peter Scazzero speaks to this in his book Emotionally Healthy Spirituality. One of the things that he emphasises is “listening to the interruptions.” When small or large interruptions happen, do we pay attention or hurry to get through them? Many times those interruptions may be just what God wants to use in our lives to get us out of our ladder-climbing routine long enough to grow emotionally and spiritually. Scazzero points out that sudden loss is one form of interruption. Losses remind us that we are not in control. Peter Scazzero says this about loss,
our culture does very poorly with loss, and especially church culture. The attitude is one of don’t feel, don’t talk about it. Or stuff it and numb it; medicate yourself in some way. And that’s why we love our addictions; everything from shopping, to food, to drugs, to alcohol, you name it. But there is something about it because when we go through loss and grief, we lose control. And who wants to be out of control? We don’t.2
What are the interruptions in my life right now? To what do I need to pay attention? What opportunities for growth are right in front of me? Will I pay attention or keep climbing the ladder?
Covey, Stephen R. Seven Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change. Simon and Schuster, 1989.
Scazzero, Peter. Emotionally Healthy Spirituality. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2006.
1 (Covey 1989, 89)
2 (Scazzero 2006) sermon series.