The other day I was enjoying lunch at the Latin Café, one of my favorite places to eat in Miami. They offer a selection of Cuban food that is tough to beat. We ate lunch outside under a canopy listening to and watching a torrential downpour. As a Canadian I always find rain in Miami to be interesting because it does not have much cooling effect. Sometime during lunch someone got into my rental car and stole all my stuff. Over the years I have had vehicles stolen and our house broken into on multiple occasions but I have never experienced a travel theft. Quite honestly I find this somewhat interesting because the stereotypical understanding of the communities I visit could easily lead some to believe that I have experienced multiple thefts and muggings. This isn’t the case. Although there is a certain amount of crime in our DOOR locations it hasn’t been a dominate reality for me. For the most part our communities are filled with amazing people.

Losing everything 2,000 miles from home was strange. All I had were the clothes I was wearing, my wallet, and an iPhone with a dying battery. I knew that I had a long couple of flights in front of me: Miami to Houston, a four-hour layover, and a flight from Houston to Denver.

I arrived at the airport only to find out my flight to Houston had been delayed because of weather. About this time, it sunk in that this was going to be a very long day. I have learned to survive delayed flights, long fights, and layovers through technology. Until that afternoon, I had a computer with an 8-hour battery, an iPad with TV shows, and chargers for everything – just in case. For the next 10 hours I was provided an opportunity to unplug. And you want to know something? It wasn’t so bad. Eliminating all the background noise and distractions gave me a space to think, relax, and reflect.

Throughout the gospels there are references to Jesus withdrawing. The modern interpretation of this might have something to do with withdrawing from technology. Our Denver director recently quit Facebook. According to him, he is less stressed and has more time to be with his family.

Having everything stolen from me initially felt like a violation. But it was also a gift of 10 hours to get reacquainted with my soul. I hope I can find ways to intentionally withdraw more often.