I sit on the bench. In the quiet I watch the sun rise and listen to the birds singing and calling to one another. There are few people around at that hour, but the wetlands are prolific with all kinds of bird life.
What a glorious morning, and I have nowhere else to be, no need to rush. I want to sit and soak it all in, to breathe and be present in this moment.
But there is also a little voice urging me to get up, get moving, and do something more productive.
It’s not easy to stop, to be still, to be present, to listen.
I know this is an invitation to be with the Lord, to sit with him, watch with him. Not worrying about a prayer list, not worrying about whether he will speak to me. But just to be. To open my eyes, my ears and my heart to the beauty around me, allow it to inspire wonder and worship.
But it’s still a struggle to stay on that bench, not to get up and walk away.
A week later and I am back at the wetlands, sitting on the same bench. Another early morning. The fairy wrens are playing chasy, looping in circles, skimming low over the ground, alighting on reed stems before hopping from one to the next. Light glitters on the rippling water. The sun is a glowing orb rising from behind the hill.
And this time – this time is different. This time I’m not restless. This time, my soul is still, and I am grateful for the beauty of this morning, for this gift of whitespace, this gift of companionship, for this moment of intimacy.
In this moment I am content, grateful for this life.
I have stilled and quieted my soul. And I breathe life again.
But I have calmed and quieted myself, I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content. ~ Psalm 131:2