Monday, August 30th

Now that school has started again, I have been making some adjustments to my walking route and schedule. Jim needs to prepare for his bus route early each morning, so I generally begin walking soon after he heads to the bus garage. I find that I love this earlier walking time. At this hour, the rabbits and birds seem to be more trusting of me, lingering near my path even as I come closer. I appreciate the early morning glow of the sky at sunrise, the quieter surroundings, the cooler temperatures. My pace is slower and more spiritual as I savor the solitude within me, the stillness around me.

Part of the joy of my route comes from greeting my neighbors – those walking or driving by me. I smile and wave to everyone, hoping to convey that I am happy to see them, to share this moment in our separate journeys, to bless them as we begin this new day. But this week, I have noticed that there comes a time when I stop waving. As the school traffic begins to increase, smiling and waving to every car would appear ridiculous, so I avert my eyes from the people and turn my focus to safely dodging the vehicles.

I wonder if this also happens with God. Our ever-present God is coming to us, one God-moment after another, as steadily as oncoming traffic during rush hour. But we cannot comprehend any of these moments until we pause long enough to seek out one. In the early morning quiet, when life is slower and we are mindful, we can more easily see and acknowledge God’s presence all around us. But when our hectic life keeps coming at us – or when our frantic selves keep coming at life – we begin to avert our eyes and turn our attention solely on our success or survival.

Life can come at us with full force, but God is there in it, too. My invitation for this week is to take small moments throughout the day to simply pause what I am doing and turn my attention to greet God; to stop still in the middle of my busyness and say, “I see you God, I am happy to share my journey with you, and I hope to bless you in this moment.” This practice will be similar to taking a quick snapshot of the life before me, then noticing where I find God’s presence in the details. I trust that in doing so, I will recognize God’s active presence and power more often and in new ways.

Does this invitation speak to your heart? How might you begin pausing more often to greet God throughout the day? Can you recall a time when you were not aware of God’s presence until you took a closer look at that snapshot memory of your life? With enough practice, could our attentiveness become a way of life, could our mindfulness extend into every moment of our daily living?

If you were to pause right now to greet God, where would you look first?

My prayers have been for you.

(This is the last post of the Notice and Discover summer series. I will be taking a short break but plan to begin a new series after Labor Day. Thank you, friends!)

Photos by Karen, Hurricane, WV

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