The Timeout Chair
It is common practice for parents to place their child in a “timeout chair” as a form of discipline. They designate a certain corner of the room or have a small chair or stool that the offending little culprit is sent to, to “think over his actions.” Some parents set a timer and the child can return to family activities when the timer rings.
On our grandson’s first birthday, we purchased a lovely little rocker that was just his size. At the party it did not get a lot of attention, but at home it was a different story. He and his older sister decided it made the perfect “stepping tool” allowing them access to areas that had been beyond their reach. Both toddlers wanted it at the same time and sibling rivalry erupted as they tried to determine who would win the battle. My son called to see if we could find another chair just like it so peace could be restored. No luck; they were all sold out. Finally in a desperate act, the poor little chair was placed in the corner with a “timeout” sign taped to it. The chair was in “timeout” and off limits to the toddlers!
We have all been to a sports event when the game is heating up and the captain makes a sign with his hands alerting the referee that his team needs “timeout.” The whistle blows! The crowd falls silent as the team regroups to discuss the best strategy for the upcoming play. Confident and ready, they return to the game while the crowd cheers them on.
This past week we attended a prayer conference in the Ft Worth area. It was intense and deeply enriching. At one point, the instructor shared about times in the ministry of his church where a member of his worship team needed to stop, sit in the “timeout” chair and regroup. The concept boggled my mind. We think we are indestructible and we must plod on at all cost. Often that decision costs us, and those we love, stress and frustration. Sometimes we must give ourselves permission to sit in the timeout chair. We must drink from God’s cup and receive further marching instructions from Him.
Time after time, in His Word, people cried; TIMEOUT! Moses became exhausted from settling peoples’ problems, Elijah spent timeout in the desert, and Mary and the disciples sat at His feet for personal instruction. The list is endless! Even Jesus went away to a quiet place to be alone with His Father.
Feeling a little burn out? Drained? Curl up in His “timeout chair” and enjoy the soothing refreshment of being revived and restored in His presence. “You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.” Ps. 16:11