“Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.” I love that translation of this verse. Much like how we talked this morning about tuning our hearts to A440 of God’s grace, Jesus is also inviting us to consider the rhythm or pace of our lives.
If you’re like me, there are times when I race ahead of God’s steady tempo. Lately, I ’ve been sprinting busily through my day, feeling rushed and hectic. And I have felt the unforced rhythm of grace inviting me to slow down, to breathe and to remember that God is never in a hurry, that this frenetic pace of life is disconnecting me from being present to God.
At other times, I can be guilty of being spiritually sluggish or idle, prone to drift - I can lose awareness and fall behind in my Christ-following. In these seasons, the rhythm of grace is almost like the steady pounding of a steam engine or marching drum, inviting me to sync up and keep pace with God’s activity in my life.
Musicians use a metronome, like this, to help keep time. Spiritually, things like participating in a church service or a Life Group, or carving out daily quiet time with God, act like spiritual metronomes, inviting us to live in sync with the rhythm of God’s grace.
For the next few moments, I want to invite you to try an experiment with me, to use the rhythm of this metronome to guide us into a prayerful experience of God’s grace. I want you to try to align your breathing with this beat. We’re going to add some more percussion instruments, and you can feel free to join in by tapping your feet, clapping your hands or simply breathing in time with the beat. This may feel a little awkward at first, but we want this experience to help us embody a very simple prayer, inviting God to align our lives with the rhythm of grace. As we do this, you may notice that your tendency is to speed ahead of the beat, or maybe lag behind. Whatever happens, invite God to speak to you about how this may relate to your spiritual life these days. Is God inviting you to slow down, or pick up the pace?
So let’s start; simply breathe in and out along with the rhythm of the beat.