This morning, I opened the windows of the RV and sat on the couch, the light pouring in. For the better part of an hour, I remained there, appearing comatose. Some would call it, “doing nothing,” and I can’t disagree. I was, in fact, doing nothing, but at the same time, I was enjoying being fully present in the moment, a habit that takes time to establish, but makes a mighty big difference in how you view the world.
Through the window, I watched an old man walking his cocker spaniel. A child splashing water on her brother. I heard the chatter of neighbors as they leaned against the hood of a blue truck. I didn’t want to miss a thing.
Do you feel like you live on autopilot? You end up at a traffic light and don’t even remember getting there? You feel you lost a whole week, just like that?
I recall those busy days that seemed to never end. You leave home before dawn and return with nerves wound tight. Everybody’s hungry and looking at you to feed them. There’s homework and housework and no time to spare. Oh, for an hour alone for doing nothing.
But the good news is you don’t need long stretches of time for doing nothing. All you need are a few minutes and a made-up mind.
If you find yourself washing a few dishes tonight, slow down and imagine the warm, sudsy water is your private lake. Visualize yourself strolling around it, dipping your toes in it, laying beside it under the shade of a tree. It sounds ridiculously simple, even silly, but it works. A mini-vacation moment can feed your soul. Try it.
Tomorrow, as you go about your day, look for God’s gifts—a cloud playing peek-a-boo with the sun, a flower in bloom, a bird in flight, the wind on your face. At lunch, avoid eating indoors. If the weather is pleasant, get outside. Stroll around the building. Take a blanket and find a tree to sit under. See. Smell. Feel.
On the drive home, turn off the noise. Breathe deeply, in and out. Say a prayer. Hum a song. Quote a verse of Scripture. A bit of decompressing works wonders.
When all is said and done, life’s too short to let it go by in a blur. And while we can’t all up and quit our jobs, by consciously practicing being fully present in the moment, we not only change the color of our world from gray to glowing, we wash the scales from our eyes, and the plaque from our heart. Life flows in and out, richer and fuller than before.
Until next time, sweet friends, press on.