Will you take a little journey with me? I know that life is really busy and that neither you or I have very much time…but let’s try to take a break each day for at least a few minutes? Breathe with me. Let’s be present in the moment that we are in… What is happening right now that is giving us Life?
If you are a writer you might understand when I tell you that I have literally written down hundreds if not thousands of things that my Spirit says, “Write this down and then Share This.” So I make a note of what I am supposed to write down and share…on the back of an envelope, on a yellow sticky note, on the coupon that expired last week that was put in the compartment beside of the drivers seat in my car. I make a note of the things that I am supposed to write about on little legal pads, large legal pads, spiral notebooks, journals, my hands, my knees, the backs of books. I have notes about the things that I am supposed to write about surrounding me everywhere. But like the note on the refrigerator to “Eat Clean” or the notes taped by our work computer, after a while we stop noticing. the messages. All of our important notes that we have written down so as not to forget have become forgotten… equivalent to white noise.
White noise has a purpose when used thoughtfully, and sparingly. It can relax us. It can numb our mind and let us rest. But white noise is not supposed to be our “go to” cure to remove ourselves from the hectic sounds and stimulation that are constantly bombarding us. White noise is still noise. So, what is supposed to be our “go to” cure to remove ourselves from the pace and pressure of our world?
What do we hear in the silence? Do we even know what silence is anymore? Or do we keep the TV on or the radio on or the humidifier or bathroom fan on? Or are we attached to music coming through our ear buds at all times?
What does the wind sound like? What do the crows and the geese and the whippoorwill and the hawk have to say? Can you hear your heart beat? Can you hear your breathing? Are you alive?
Being alive is more than waking, working and sleeping. Being alive is noticing, feeling, connecting.
Are you exhausted, over-loaded, burned out? What are you doing about it? When you get this feeling do you just push on through…ignore it…kick it down the road to deal with it later and later and later? What would happen if you decided to rest? Would you know how? Do you feel like you have to “run away” or take a vacation to the beach or the mountains or to an exotic spot on the other side of your world to be able to rest?
Let’s pause just for a moment and think about where you are and what you are doing when you experience a physical, mental and spiritual feeling of rest. Laying in bed for a few extra minutes and feeling the warmth and heaviness of the covers…feeling your head cradled in the softness of your pillow…feeling your skin under the smooth sheets…feeling our body relaxed and without tension?Does this ever happen? And then you stretch and turn and lay thinking about nothing and worrying about nothing…just basking in the feeling for a few more minutes. How luxurious!
That is resting in the moment. That is living in the moment. That is being present. That is being Alive.
How about a moment at the end of a long summer work day. The job has been stressful, the humidity has been miserable, the traffic has been a nightmare. You come home and it is dusk. A cool breeze has picked up and the sky is pink and dark blue and purple. There are clouds that look like an angel battle… powerful out-stretched feathery wings of white…dark gray swirls… demons plummeting. You walk up to the door of your house, but instead of going in immediately you turn around and look again at the sky and sit down on the steps and watch the day darken…look at the silhouettes of the trees… and smell someone’s dinner being cooked on a grill. The tree frogs start croaking and your cat quietly appears. You mindlessly stoke the purring creature while you become one, even if just for a moment, with all of Creation.
I could go on and on forever with scenes like this. These are my scenes. Walking in the woods and listening to the mountain stream gurgle and babble…Lying in a meadow on a blanket and watching clouds quickly pass across the sky…sunlight sparkling on the lake…leaves falling…snowflakes…
My soft bed. My sky. My Nature. My Now. Exploring somewhere new, exploring somewhere I have been a thousand times. Seeing something, hearing something, feeling something…a thousand somethings… in that moment
We can find rest without going anywhere. Ironically, the way that we can find rest in this world is by seeing this world with eyes that see More than this world…that see the good in this world and know that the bad is created to try and get our attention. Give your attention…but not all of your attention! Notice it for what it is. Temporary.
The danger is that we can be diverted and distracted to the point that we fail to see anything but this world and all of the craziness. God gave us eyes to see to see through, to see More and to see what is really real. Author Bill Johnson says, “The invisible realm is superior to the natural.” Do you believe that? Do you believe in God and Angels and satan and demons and eternity?
2 Corinthians 4:18 says, “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
But God made us sensual and sensory and living in skin beings with a set number of days for our bodies to live… but we are more than animals. We are made in God’s Image. We are Spiritual. We have eyes like creatures…but we also have eyes like our Creator. We have needs for our body but we also have needs for our Spirit.
What is it about the feeling of my rested body in my bed or the coolness of the breeze on my hot and tired skin after a long day that is so wonderful? It is More than just a physical pleasure. It speaks to my Spirit. It makes me not just feel good on the outside…it makes me feel good on the inside.
What are the sounds and sights and feelings of peace and joy? What makes these small moments special and meaningful? We didn’t seek them out…but they were there for the taking…if we noticed.
What is there to be noticed that we are we not noticing? Let’s start with that question for today. What would your answer be?
Notice if your mind is thinking about things of the past…or worried about things of the future. Is there anything that can be done to change the past to make it better? If there is, feel free to make a plan in this moment and maybe even do something in this moment so that the past will not dominate your thoughts from this moment on.
Is there anything that can be done to ensure a good outcome for the future? Do you have a plan right now that will set your vision and goal on a trajectory to make prosperity and success more likely? Then if there is, feel free to make a plan in this moment and maybe even do a few initial things in this moment that might aid success. And when you have done what you can in this moment…stop worrying about the things that May Happen Wrong…because there is the same chance that they May Happen Right.
Jesus asks us,
“And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?” Matthew 6:27
“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?” Luke 12:25
Let’s stop being regretful. Stop being bitter. Stop being a victim of unfair circumstances. Stop wishing our life away. Stop pining for our “Glory Days”. Stop fearing the future. Stop planning for our life to be better later.We are given Now. Stop and notice Now. We are wasting our life by always wanting to reach the destination or regretting the detours. We are on our way to somewhere but right now we are here. And we would not have gotten Here if we had not first gone There…but we are not there anymore.
The Past has passed. The future may be wonderful or challenging or both. God has given us Now. Today. This moment. What do we see in it. Look with the eyes of your heart. Is there something beautiful that you might have missed? Breath. Breathing is beautiful. Close your eyes and raise your arms and stretch. Stretching is beautiful. Think about the things that you love…the people…the animals…the places…the flowers…the food…the smells…the activities…the way that you feel when you are most happy and at peace. You can feel those things now. Let’s notice them when they are happening and bring those feelings back at any time…when we do, we are enjoying Life. We are Living. We are Alive.
Life is not busy-ness. Life is not constant motion at a hectic pace. Step off of the gerbil wheel. Step off now and be in this moment or in the thoughts of the moments that make you Alive. Live in this state…because God made us to be Awake and Aware and Alive. Today this moment. Right Now.
And then the next moment
And then the next moment
This is Life. Living. Being Alive. Breathe in and Out. See, smell, hear, taste, touch, feel. Say thank you. Be thankful.
Trust that this moment is enough. And that the next moment will be enough too.