What About Bob?
In 1991, a remarkable movie was released, titled, “What About Bob?” It is a comedy starring Richard Dreyfuss who plays a psychiatrist and Bill Murray stars as his patient with countless phobias that shut him down and keep him from living a balanced and “normal” life. In order to help Bill Murray’s character, Bob, deal with the complexities of life, Richard Dreyfuss’s character helps him tackle everyday responsibilities by taking one small step at a time. Instead of thinking about going outside, he should think about standing up and walking to the door. Instead of thinking about going down three flights of stairs, he could think about walking down the hallway and opening the door. (If you haven’t seen the movie, I am sure you get the idea…)
Baby Steps To The Bed
Well, in the late 1990s, I threw out my back and it was so hard to do anything without being in excruciating pain. Thankfully one of my closest friends invited me to live with her while I was recovering.
One Friday night, we watched this movie together and honestly, I have never laughed so hard. Even though the film kept us in stitches, I was keenly aware of the subtle truth behind the acting. Just like Bob, sometimes I would get overwhelmed by the complexities of life, so I needed to break things down into baby steps.
Instead of thinking about how much it would hurt to walk to the kitchen to get a glass of water I should think about just standing up. Then, I could think about walking into the kitchen and then I could think about opening the cabinet, etc. If I could break tasks down into small, manageable steps, I could focus my attention like a laser and then the job would be complete before I even knew it.
Slow And Steady Wins The Race
I have shared part of my testimony in the post “He Loved Me First.” If you haven’t read it, I hope you will take the time and read it now.
After seeking help from LOTS of medical professions, a rheumatologist diagnosed me with fibromyalgia. He looked at me and told me point blank, that unless I got in control of the stress I was under, I would not make it. I would not be able to live a healthy and productive life.
He literally reminded me of the story of the tortoise and the hare. He said that I HAD to become like the turtle by changing the way I lived little by little. I needed to exercise and eat right. I needed to figure out what I could and could not handle with my friends and family and then put up appropriate boundaries so that I could heal.
Listening to his counsel and making the necessary changes in my life was one of the most challenging seasons in my life. It caused me a great deal of inner turmoil and anguish but I knew that it was the right thing to do.
So, the next morning, I picked up my tennis shoes, put them on and walked out my front door. I walked across the street to my mailbox and then, I turned around and walked back inside. And that was Day 1. That was all that I could do that day. Each day after, I added a little bit more to my routine until I was walking 3 miles effortlessly.
A Charter Member Of The Turtle Club
You have heard me refer to myself as a turtle from time to time. This mentality of living a slow and steady, purposeful life is what I mean when I say that I am a turtle. And when you are a goal oriented person, like me, this can be a challenge.
We live in a fast-paced, rabbit centered world. Everywhere we go there is a push to do, do, do. Go, go, go. Get-it, get-it, get-it. (Whatever “it” is…) But, just because this energy is all around us, doesn’t mean that it is what our Daddy God wants for us. Actually, I believe this fast paced lifestyle is wearing us down, causing sickness and dis-ease. Jesus says it best when He said,
Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11: 28 – 30
So, my prayer for us today is that we would take the time to BeLoved Completely. As we do, let’s ask the Holy Spirit to search our hearts and minds to see if there is any rabbit way in us. Are we being arrogant and prideful thinking that we can do it all? If so, let’s be quick to repent and turn around. Let’s take up the mindset of the turtle. Let’s focus on slow and steady steps to help us cross our finish line where we will literally hear our Father say, “Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into your rest!”
With love, Kim