Missional is the “Slow Movement” of Christianity

I’m a big supporter of the “slow movement” which is all about taking time to enjoy the journey of life, as opposed to the desperate need to arrive, meet the goal, accomplish the task, do as much as possible in as little time as possible.

The slow movement is not about doing things slowly, but seeks to connect us more meaningfully with others, with our communities, with family, and with who we are as spiritual beings. A main tenant is that by taking the appropriate amount of time to experience the various activities, people and communities in our lives, we are able to savor, deepen, and invigorate the important things and relationships. “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10) echoes this need.

Philosopher Guttorm Fløistad summarizes the slow movement, stating: “The only thing for certain is that everything changes. The rate of change increases. If you want to hang on you better speed up. That is the message of today. It could however be useful to remind everyone that our basic needs never change. The need to be seen and appreciated! It is the need to belong. The need for nearness and care, and for a little love! This is given only through slowness in human relations. In order to master changes, we have to recover slowness, reflection and togetherness. There we will find real renewal.”

slow movement missional

Missional is the slow movement of Christianity. It’s where “the way of Jesus” informs and radically transforms our existence to one wholly focused on sacrificially living for him and others, where we seek to connect more meaningfully with others, with our communities, with family, and with Jesus.

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7 Responses to “Missional is the “Slow Movement” of Christianity”

  1. B.D. says:

    I think this is right on Rick! It’s a transition from “we need results now!” to more of the way of Jesus which is connective and tough to understand any idea of timetable on.

  2. Rick Meigs says:

    Exactly BD. The “we need results now” model leads to so many things that are counterproductive, detrimental to the kingdom, and do little to connect us with our communities and neighbors.

  3. A good word, Rick. This reminds me of a book from about 15 years ago – the subtitle is certainly applicable: *Hyperculture: The Human Cost of Speed*. We’ve let the “Tyranny of the Urgent” race us past what’s important. Have we been so “visionary” in engaging our imagination about our future goals that we epic-fail to live in the present?

  4. Bret Wells says:

    Good reminder Rick.

    Along a similar vein, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove’s book The Wisdom of Stability highlights the need to slow down (and perhaps stay put) in order to hear God. He says, “If life with God can happen anywhere at all, it can happen here.”

    Being missional means we can’t be tied to the comfort of our routines – and yet it also means we should be prepared to serve as a comfort in the midst of our routines. Its hard to do that when we’re constantly looking for the next thing.

  5. Rick Meigs says:

    Brad and Brent… Thanks for the good insight, and new book titles to check out. This whole aspect of our lives as Jesus followers is really important. Somehow it needs more attention and dialogue.

  6. Matt Stone says:

    Does it need to be either / or?

    If we consider the 3 D’s of robotics, that is, what is ripe for robotization is tasks which are dirty, dangerous or dull, the flip side is a mandate for people to focus more and more on that which requires creativity, compassion and humanity.

    Could not a case be built for greater productivity in that which wastes our time so that we have more time to focus on the important stuff. For example, greater efficiency with housework so I have more time to help the kids with life? Speed up some things (that matter less) so we can slow down with other things (that matter more)?

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