“But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” ~ Isaiah 40:31
I saw a post online the other day, that bothered me. It wasn’t anything overtly insulting so it took me awhile to realize why I had found it upsetting. It spoke of a 14-year old who had chosen not to participate in a fall sport; naturally the parents didn’t want them “vegging out” so they asked for places in need of volunteering.
Now, at first it might seem like there is nothing wrong with a parent asking for places in need of volunteers. Obviously, I am always asking for volunteers myself, so I am pleased to see that these parents wanted their child involved. But I found myself struggling with the concept that because their child didn’t participate in a sport, they would need something else to do. When did free time become “vegging out”?
We have lost our quiet. The idea that there should “doing nothing” as an activity that we should add to the schedule no longer exists. We no longer have the time to pray in quiet, to sit and reflect on our hopes and dreams. The art of waiting in silence, for anything, let alone the Lord’s whisper is gone. Maybe the 14-year does just want to veg out. But, even if that is the case, this 14 year old took the initiative to recognize that they needed time to do nothing. And instead of recognizing that as a need, a well meaning adult decided that the time must be filled.
I know that parents fear what their child will do when we are not around, but maybe we should spend a little more time filling our spiritual lives, instead of filling our calendars. When was the last time your family was in church, or at class, or at the parish picnic together? Life is only as busy as we allow it to be.
Maybe instead of filling the calendar, we can cancel a few things and spend time together. Let’s all try.
What is your favorite way to spend time together as a family?