Every quarter our 'Faith and Work' ministry recommends a book that will equip you with Christian insights into your work-life. This time we recommend The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry: How To Stay Emotionally Healthy And Spiritually Alive In The Chaos Of The Modern World by John Mark Comer (published by Hodder & Stoughton, 2019).
Written in an approachable style, this book identifies a core problem that many of us working in the 21st century cannot easily escape. Although written by a professional church leader, whose schedule probably differs considerably from that of someone who works in a secular job, John Mark Comer first confesses that he suffers from many of the same problems that secular workers face, before going on to put his finger on one of the biggest obstacles for someone who wants to follow Jesus: hurry. Over the last century or so, and particularly since 2007 (the advent of the smartphone), the pace of life has speeded up immensely. Comer analyses the problem, how it has evolved, and explains why the pace we are now forced to adopt fundamentally goes against the grain of the universe.
Too often, we treat the symptoms of toxicity in our modern world instead of trying to pinpoint and deal with the cause. A growing number of voices are pointing at hurry, or busyness, as a root of much evil. How do we break free from the pressures to conform, to work harder than ever before, and to remain ‘always on’?
To set out on his quest to find answers, Comer took the radical step of resigning his then current position. Over the next five years, he discovered more about the so-called ‘easy yoke’ (Matthew 11:28-30) and identified some profound truths underlying Jesus’s invitation that many of us have overlooked. Comer suggests four helpful practices for unhurrying our lives. In this world of busy schedules, it seems hard to add another four things to our already burgeoning list of must dos. But during this time of lockdown, so much has changed and the new normal has yet to be fully established, making this is a great time for us to take stock and integrate Comer’s suggestions into our already changing routine.
This book has the potential to refresh, revitalise and shock your system. It sets out a prophetic message for our time that is particularly relevant for those of us struggling to juggle too many things and finding that mirage of a healthy work-life balance too elusive. Comer brings the oasis within reach and what is more, he highlights some remarkably easy ways to win back enough time to make the changes…if we really want to. There is a really strong case for getting started now, before the lockdown comes to an end, and whilst the consequent disruption to our schedules allows fresh patterns to be established.