January 06, 2022

Keep in Step With God in 2022 by Bob Jones


“I open a Bible, and His plans, startling, lie there barefaced. It’s hard to believe it, when I read it, and I have to come back to it many times, feel long across those words, make sure they are real.” 
- Ann Voskamp


“The Bible is meant to be bread for daily use, not cake for special occasions.” 

- Don Moen


“When you open your Bible, God opens His mouth.”

- Mark Batterson


As 2021 gives way to a new year, I reflect on how God is inviting me to share my days in 2022 with Him. Three words: ruthlessly eliminate hurry.




Think about the last time you were writing or living at your best and in a hurry. If you’re like me and you’re drawing a blank that’s not surprising. I’m usually at my miserable worst as a writer, a leader, a husband, and a follower of Jesus when I am in a hurry.


Hurry and creativity are like oil and water. More importantly, so are hurry and love. I know that when I am in a hurry I ooze frustration, tension, anxiety – anything but love or creativity.


Hurry sucks the life out of creativity.


John Mark Comer, author of “The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry tells the story of a conversation with his therapist. Comer shared the vision of his church which called for people to be apprentices of Jesus. His therapist loved the vision but explained, “The number one problem you will face is time. People are too busy to live emotionally healthy and spiritually rich lives.” (p.21)


Bible Engagement


In 2021 my days started with reading the Bible. Do you know that reading the Bible is the single most effective practise to grow Christian character and behaviour? The frequency of Bible reading was one of the key indicators and influencers toward spiritual growth. In other words, the more you read your Bible, the more likely you are going to grow in all aspects of spiritual maturity. ALL ASPECTS. Isn’t that incredible?


However, Bible reading is also the most neglected practise of 90% of North American Christians. According to a 2021 Barna survey, 11% of Christians use their Bible like daily bread. Most others see it as cake for special occasions. So, I made it my goal in November and December to help people in our church have the best shot at reading their Bible every day.


Now, before going on, let’s be clear. I don’t read the Bible to check off a box on a to-do-list or to follow the Bible. I read the Bible to follow Jesus. Unlike Islam, Christians are not “people of the Book.” Christians don’t and shouldn’t follow the Bible, otherwise women could not cut their hair, they would have to wear a head covering, men couldn’t trim their beards, and we’d have to greet all believers with a kiss even in a pandemic.


“The primary purpose of reading the Bible is not to know the Bible but to know God.”

-  James Merritt



I read the whole Bible looking for how to better love like Jesus. The YouVersion app is a Godsend for Bible reading. However, passion and availability are not enough to protect against hurry. I found myself skimming – hurrying through the reading more days than not. Especially when reading passages with which I thought I was most familiar. Slow is the operative word when connecting with God. Patience and going slow may feel less productive, but slow is most effective when you want to grow.


The Pace of God


Think about the ways Paul describes the behaviours of love in 1 Corinthians 13. What is his first descriptor? Patience. What behaviour is most challenging for you to practise? I’m guessing patience.


Jesus calls us to love. To love you must eliminate hurry and go s-l-o-w. Parents of little kids know that love is painfully time consuming. For that matter, parents of teens know the demands of patience. 


Jame Clear says,"Slowing down enables you to act in a high quality way. Kind rather than curt. Polished rather than sloppy. It's hard to be thoughtful when you're in a rush."


In his book, Three Mile an Hour God, the late Japanese theologian Kosuke Koyama described why the Father’s pace is slow. “God walks slowly because he is love. If he is not love he would have gone much faster.“


Walter Adams, the spiritual director for C. S. Lewis, called him to examine his walk with Jesus. “To walk with Jesus is to walk with a slow, unhurried pace. Hurry is the death of prayer and only impedes and spoils our work. It never advances it.”


You can't control COVID-19 in 2022 but you can control your pace and engagement with God. Here's to the ruthless elimination of hurry in all you do.

Happy New Year!


I write to grow hope, inspire people to be real, forge an authentic faith in Jesus, and discover their life purpose.

Please follow my writing at REVwords.com

I would love to hear from you.



  1. Thank you for this post, Bob, and for pointing out the dangers of busyness/ hurriedness. If we think back to our times of courtship/dating, how many of us rushed our intereactions with the one we were spending time with, whether in person or on the phone? Didn't we rather enjoy lingering and being in the other's presence. Didn't we get to know the other person better that way, having long conversations, asking questions, seeing how they behaved toward various types of people and in groups? If we want to get to know God better, we need to linger and dig deep, to listen and reflect.

    1. So true about dating, Susan. I remember those days. You understand the benefits of "slow" when it comes to interacting with God.

  2. Wonderful post, Bob. Your words and quotes affirmed my love of lingering in the Word during my quiet times. My need to read slow and linger long is why Bible reading programs never worked for me. I prefer my sticky note pace. I put a sticky note in the Old and New Testaments and read where I left off from the day before. Sometimes I stay in the same chapter for several days.

    Good friends don't rush their coffee dates.

    Amen to these words of yours: "Patience and going slow may feel less productive, but slow is most effective when you want to grow."

    Blessings for 2022 ~ Wendy Mac

    1. Thank you Wendy for going slow enough to lean in and comment. Sticky notes are great - paper or digital.

  3. Thank you for your wise words, Bob. I hear a pastor's heart in them. I used to feel guilty about not achieving goals set by various Bible reading programs. Now that I'm an 'old lady' I've chosen to set my own scripture reading pace. I've discovered I love to savour God's Word, lingering long in passages that speak to my heart or which challenge me. Mostly I love to linger long with Jesus. Your post affirms what has always felt right, spending time with the One I love most.

    1. That's so good, Val. My goal is to know Jesus through reading the Bible and that can mean a single verse or an entire gospel in one sitting. Read on in 2022!

  4. "Hurry sucks the life out of creativity." Oh yes, I know that to be true in my own experience. I so enjoyed reading your post, Bob. It's a topic I've been interested in for a long time. Learning to live our lives in a calmness and peace of spirit without always being in a hurry rushing around. At this stage of my life, I now have the opportunity and time to wait, listen, and just be. And to take time with my writing. There is no rushing a post, for it takes slow time sometimes to create a piece that is beautiful in meaning and expression. I look forward to following up the links you provided. Your post is timely as we begin a new year. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you, Brenda. I'm glad the content resonated with you. That is affirming to me. I'm not sure about you but the way I go slow in writing is to have 2 or 3 or 4 posts on the go, at various stages of completion. My intros or endings don't come easy so the revisiting is part of my go slow strategy.

    2. 'Tis a great idea, Bob, to have several on the go in those various stages of completion. When something is slowly percolating in one post and not quite ready to finish off, then there is something else to work away at in the meantime.

  5. How beautifully you've pictured for us the unhurried life, slowing down to spend more time with the Lord and His Word. This is one of the graces I've discovered in retirement, to spend more quality time with Him in the mornings--to soak in more of His life and what He wants to say to me, how He wants me to be more like Him, and how He wants His life to flow through me to others. Thanks, Bob!

    1. Thank you, Sandi. Even in retirement, the impulse of hurry is never too distant from our days. Good that you are making time daily to go slow and walk, not run with Jesus.

  6. Writing and hurry are like oil and water. Profound!

  7. I'm guilty of hurrying my Bible reading. I'll have to slow down and savour the scriptures. I'll also have to pray more about ones which trigger bad memories. That cult twisted so many wonderful truths to fit the leader's ideas.

    1. Savour is a rich word. I'm glad you are out of the cult. Continue to let the words of Jesus wash through you like water through a strainer.

  8. Love this post, Bob. When I read my Bible and cannot remember what I just read I know I am either distracted or in too much of a hurry. It gains me nothing and borders on insolence as a child of God. He deserves my everything. Many thanks, again.

  9. Thank you, Sharon. Slow is a good 4-letter word. Focus is a great 5-letter word. Have you played the game WORDLE yet?

  10. Just started playing it recently and am quite enjoying it. You?


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