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This week on Real Talk with Rachael I’m talking with author Jennifer Dukes Lee about her new book Growing Slow: Lessons on Un-Hurrying Your Heart from an Accidental Farm Girl. Jennifer lives on the fifth-generation Lee family farm in Iowa, where she and her husband are raising crops, pigs, and two beautiful humans. She writes books, loves queso, and enjoys singing too loudly to songs with great harmony. Once upon a time, she didn’t believe in Jesus; now he’s her CEO.

Key Points from Our Conversation:

  • Jennifer has lived a life of “go big or go home,” but the problem was more than what was on her calendar, it was her hurried heart. A change in her physical condition required a mindset shift. Once she embraced the mindset, growing slow became her superpower.
  • We don’t always cheer people who grow slow, but overnight success is a myth.
  • Seeing life through the lens of a farmer changed Jennifer’s understanding of what it means to grow slow. She paid attention to what God was doing in different seasons.
  • We get distracted with upward growth, but what will anchor us through drought and storms is our deep roots.
  • We’d like to stay in the three phases of planting, growth, and harvest, but we all experience winters of the soul. We weren’t designed to grow all the time. Winter is important to the land and it makes it better in the spring. We should allow winter to do its work in us, too.
  • 2020 has been a season of prolonged winter. Before we jump back into a season of growth, we should consider what this winter has taught us.
  • Growing slow forces buried issues to the surface much like the winter forces rocks to the surface of fields. What if we allowed winter to do the work in us, lifting the burdens that we carry and then allow God to “pick rock” from our lives?
  • We treat time as an enemy, but God and time are friends. We’re not falling behind, we just don’t see it the way God does. We constantly run toward new milestones, but never enjoy what’s already growing. Validate the small things that are growing where God has placed you.
  • “Hurry hangs around your heart.” There aren’t easy steps to growing slow – it’s a mindset shift that takes time to work its way to the roots.
  • Sustainable agriculture makes the land beneficial for generations. We can be sustainable people by thinking longer-term about how we are impacting future generations. It’s the little things we do as parents that help establish deep roots for our kids.
  • It can seem impossible to grow slow, but you can slow down without losing your edge. Growing slow eliminates multitasking and helps you laser focus on your priorities.

3 Practical Steps to Enjoy the Season You’re In:

  • Set your alarm 10 minutes earlier and set the tone of your day.
  • Stop checking the phone when you’re away from work or in the middle of activities. Knowing about what you need to do when you are unable to do it creates a hurried mind.
  • Embrace the concept of the slow food movement by eating mindfully, giving your brain time to tell your body you’re full and enjoy the process of eating.

Resources mentioned:

Growing Slow Bible Study Videos, Guided Journal and Growth Tracker, and Bible Study Guide Session 1

Let’s Get Real Practical:

If possible, start by downloading Jennifer’s printables mentioned in this episode. What did God bring up today that He wants to move out of your heart? Write it down.

You can mail your “rock” to Jennifer at PO BOX 327 Inwood, Iowa, 51240, and/or take a screenshot and send it to me on Instagram so that we can pray over you.

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