August 22, 2021
After my recent podcast discussion with Aubrey Marcus, in which we talked about approaching life with an affluence of time and a consideration of the possibility that you are going to live forever and can thus more easily lay aside FOMO, rush, and stress, I've been thinking just a bit more about the concept of slowing down and taking the time to savor every moment with patience and presence, and pairing those moments with a deep trust in God that He will care for you even if you're not constantly lost in your daily hypnotic trance of doing or producing or fixing or solving or creating.
And as a result of my recent dwelling upon this concept, I've come up with a fun exercise for you to try that has turned out to be quite meaningful for me (trust me, you'll probably love it because you get to eat).
Are you ready?
OK, brace yourself for a simple and relaxed dose of hedonism. Here's what you're going to do this week (notice how I'm subliminally programming you, or perhaps manifesting for you to actually do this).
First, go out for ice cream. Or sorbet. Or coconut ice cream. Or a popsicle. Whatever. Hunt down the cold, sweet, creamy stuff, preferably perched atop a lovely waffle cone, or a sugar cone, or a gluten-free, unicorn-tear-infused cone.
Next, sit down with your ice cream, preferably in the sunshine, on a patch of fresh green grass. Or the edge of a concrete curb on your neighborhood sidewalk. Or lounging Epicurean-style on your bed or couch.
Finally, eat your ice cream and do nothing but eat it. No Instagramming, no phone scrolling, no television, no self-chatter, no thinking about what you need to do next, no worrying, no cares. Hakuna matata mode baby. Taste it, savor it, love it, be fully present with it, smear it all over your taste buds (and maybe a bit on your lips and chin too), explore it, immerse yourself in it, be enchanted by the color and flavor and texture and complexity of it and just be fully present with ice cream, just for the—you know—eight to ten precious minutes you have with it before it melts into oblivion.
In other words, eat that darn ice cream cone like you are going to live forever and have nothing else to do but be fully present with ice cream.
That's all I ask you to do this week. Slow down and savor an ice cream.
See, God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him. So when I'm working in the early evening before dinner in my daylight basement office, and I glance outside to see my sons laughing and swinging in the hammocks as the sun gleams from their bright blonde hair, and I see my wife sitting near the herb garden with her glass of sparkling rose as she soaks up the birdsong and watches the Ponderosa pines swaying, my heart swells with pride and happiness, and I think…
Well, I think…
…this is why I work so hard.
This is what brings deep and lasting joy to my heart.
This has got to be one of the most fulfilling views any human being could witness: the joy of other human beings experiencing something you have created.
This must be a tiny taste of what it must feel like to be glorified by watching others being satisfied.
This is why God formed us tiny humans and surrounded us with a lush, green, magically wonderful planet— complete with ice cream cones—floating in a massive, dark solar system. He did this so He could—in a way somewhat similar to me watching my own family play and find joy in savoring the space that I have created for them—be fully glorified by watching us be fully satisfied.
This is why you and I can give ourselves permission to simply stop doing everything and slow down to savor an ice cream cone just like a happy, carefree third-grader. God is watching and smiling as His human creation revels in the refreshing coconut cream, the sweet monk fruit, and the crunchy chunks of salted dark chocolate. You're actually doing what you're supposed to be doing with that ice cream cone, especially and even more so if you pay it forward and buy somebody else an ice cream cone.
This is why I declare myself a healthy Christian hedonist, and not a stoic, Gnostically-flavored, constantly self-denying masochist, and why I instead embrace the flood of dopamine surges God allows me to pour into my cells on the daily.
How glorious it is that you and I have been given the free opportunity and the generous gift to be able to live forever, experience this Creation forever, and glorify God forever. So how about you? Will you accept my challenge to savor an ice cream cone? Leave your comments, questions, and feedback below, including how that ice cream cone exploration went for you. Also, read this, this, and this if you dig this stuff.