My new watch makes me feel like the six million dollar man. When I wear it, I am pretty sure I am half human and half cyborg. It’s the most advanced form of electronics I have ever put on my wrist.
This cool piece of technology comes with GPS, so I’m like a little laser guided missile when I run. If I decide to bike or swim, my distance is carefully logged. When I go golfing, I can tell exactly how far my wicked slice has taken the ball from the hole. Every step I take is carefully monitored during the day and my sleep patterns are tracked at night.
There’s just one thing that annoys me about this watch. If I’m sitting still for any prolonged amount of time, it buzzes and a word flashes on the screen…”MOVE!” Sometimes this even happens when I am walking around. I assume it is telling me, “Move faster!”
When my watch tells me to get going, I feel anxiety. “Why am I not moving?”, “Is my timepiece mad at me?”, “Is what I’m doing important enough to ignore my watch?” All these questions and more flash through my mind. Periodically, I find myself yelling at my wrist. It’s a good thing our whole family is crazy. This type of action doesn’t seem out of place in our home.
I’ve asked myself many times why a slight vibration on my wrist and a little reminder to move would make me anxious. One reason could be that this watch is reinforcing a message I’ve internalized in my soul. Namely, I am only as valuable as my level of productivity.
In our society, we wear the title “busy” like a badge of honor. “How are you?”, we ask each other. Other than “Good!” or “Fine”, one of the only socially acceptable responses to that question is “Busy”.
Most of the time, I respond this way because I want others to think I’m someone important. “As a matter of fact”, I subtly suggest “You are lucky I’m taking the time to even talk with you right now.” This attitude places unhealthy expectations on myself and is dehumanizing to others.
Without a doubt, there are times when my life is hectic but busyness is not my highest goal. It is noble to be active and invested in the lives of others. At the same time, God gives me these words, “Be still and know that I am God”. It’s interesting the message isn’t, “Work your butt off and know that I am God”.
I can only hear the most important voice in my life when I take the time for intentional stillness.
Maybe someday they will make my dream watch. It will periodically tell me to “Move!” but when I’ve been too active it will remind me to “Rest!” Until then, I’ll have to be proactive on my own.
Ooops! There goes my watch again. I’ve got to get going.