A child's pace
Last Saturday, I attended the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd workshop at St. Stephen's led by Anna Hurdle. Even though I was mostly familiar with the material we covered, Anna never fails to pass along some piece of wisdom.
I'm normally a busy person. My pace is relatively quick, and I enjoy managing my time efficiently. I have a hard time slowing down when there's so much to do, and Saturday was no different. Six hours at a workshop, especially on a weekend, makes for a pretty full day. As much as I love Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, I was feeling restless. I got up a few times, stood instead of sat, doodled, but I still couldn't slow my pace.
Then Anna said something critical for preparing a learning environment for a child. The pace of Catechesis is, and should always be, incredibly slow. She told us if we think we're going too slowly to go even more slowly. There's this fear that the children will get restless, but what we fail to recognize is that the slow pace is their pace. We, as adults, must match that pace, instead of imposing our own.
As much as I wanted to fidget, I realized I was imposing my own pace on the workshop. I couldn't slow down because I hadn't recognized that my pace was too quick. Once Anna's words clicked in my head, I immediately switched gears. I felt calmer, more focused, more involved. It was a beautiful reminder that God can't enter into my life if my pace is too fast for me to experience him. My pace must be like that of a child, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.