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The Art of Doing Nothing

the art of doing nothing from a post at Holy in the Daily

Today is the last day of Camp Grandma at my house. Six lively grandchildren arrived yesterday for swimming, campfires, crafts, skits, and tenting on the back lawn with Grandpa and yours truly.

While I’m offline and indulging in laughter, I thought I’d share one of my top summer posts with you. Whether you’ve read this post before or not, I think you’ll find it helpful. Enjoy!

The Art of Doing Nothing

Sometimes the most important thing you can do is nothing. As the great theologian Winnie the Pooh said, “Don’t underestimate the value of Doing Nothing, of just going along, listening to all the things you can’t hear, and not bothering.”

I rediscovered the importance of doing nothing on my summer vacation—long days with no agenda, no obligations, and few phones. Endless hours included time to crochet and read mindless novels that provided mental rest and laughter. Lovely dinners cooked with simple food and glorious sunsets added beauty to the atmosphere of doing nothing.

This was not as easy as it sounds for a girl who is very project and goal oriented. I never touched the little projects and books I had brought along with the thought I’d have time to work on my website or study for a retreat message. Every time I looked at them I heard the Lord say, “No.”

So nothing of “value” was done during vacation except:

1. I rested—both physically and mentally.

2. I had a great time with my husband who was also suffering from work withdraw.

3. I found my creative juices slowly regenerating.

4. I let the world be bigger than what I could control.

5. I discovered that not caring about some things is a very important discipline.

6. I learned that it takes several days to really get into the practice of doing nothing.

Since Tom and I take Fridays as our Sabbath, the practice of doing nothing is an ongoing discipline—a spiritual discipline that provides a place and time to connect with God and each other.

It’s been two years since I originally wrote this post, and I’m still practicing the art of doing nothing. I’m a slow learner who needs lots of practice. Plus, it’s just so much fun!

Thanks for stopping by and have a lovely day. I’ll be back on Thursday, Susan

Your thoughts? How do you work the spiritual discipline of doing nothing into your life?

Related posts:

How to Take a Break From Managing the Universe

How to Harvest Time

I recently enjoyed Jane Graham’s post on 5 Reasons Why God Wants You to Take a Vacation. I think you’ll enjoy it too.

“Jesus likes it when we share.” -Adelaide, age 3: Pass this along to everybody and their brother. OK, maybe not everybody’s brother, but you know . . . all your friends would be nice.

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This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. Jeanette Morris

    Thanks! This came at a perfect time for me–to help erase the guilt build-up I’ve been dealing with over the past few weeks of mega unproductiveness, hours spent in front of stupid reality TV shows, reading for fun (What is THAT?) and even indulging in phone-app games. (Dani Indie, you are responsible for the latest addiction.) Whereas this all may sound like doing “something” – for me, it’s the closest I can get to nothing. Like you, Sue, I’m still learning the art of doing nothing. Maybe I need a cruise. Hmmmmm…

  2. Susan

    Oh Jeanette, I do wish you and Ken can someday take a cruise. Sea days are a wonderful time to practice doing nothing. It also helps that there is someone else to do the cooking and cleaning. 🙂

    1. Jeanette Morris

      LOL! We’ve been on 3 cruises. Our fav. to Alaska. I should have said, maybe I need ANOTHER cruise. 🙂 Yeah – I really like the part when someone else does all the cooking AND cleaning up.

  3. Mary Rufener

    Thanks friend… This has challenge for me too but need to practice doing nothing more! Maybe we could do nothing together sometime 🙂 we take Fridays off as well. 🙂 hugs!

    1. Susan

      We’d love to meet up with guys one Friday. Let’s plan something… (There really isn’t much between here and there to meet halfway. Suggestions?) Email me!

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