Don't let trouble overcome your soul.
I’ve worked with a home builder before. They built frames, walls, ceilings and roofs, and fitted their structures with plumbing & electricity; flooring & trim. Many times, I would see a home being shown to prospective buyers - young families, retired couples, single young professionals. They would walk in, look at the home builder’s work, and decide to either purchase or not purchase the building. They would imagine themselves waking up with their children in the morning, making meals in a bright, earth tone-tinged kitchen and to drink a glass of water from cold silver appliances, and after some meetings would sign the next several decades of their life to a mortgage and a promising school system.
There’s an Agnes Martin piece called ‘The Moment.’ It’s an egg form composed of a series of classic Martin-ian horizontal lines. Her birthday was this last March, although she passed in 2004. The first time I saw it, it in many ways represented incubation and constancy; even innocence. One might see it and read it line by line down until the bottom, seeing a resemblance to life’s beginning to end.
Jesus talked much on how the Kingdom is like a garden. Talking to the disciples & the crowd, he said, “The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.”
A month away from the noise left me with the quiet to replace what previously demanded my time with a healthier alternative. Like quitting chocolate lunches for spinach, clarity came swift. First, instead of craving the approval of my digital identity, I had the quiet margin to get a better scale of myself. The world didn't crash, because I'm really not very important or essential to what happens in the grand scheme of things.
A mentor of mine has been telling me a lot recently about what it means to experience
contentment with God. He describes it like a day spent hiking up a long way, ending with setting
up camp and starting a fire. He said, “Imagine sitting next to the fire, and you’re right next to
God. You don’t have to say anything; you just sit next to each other and enjoy each other’s
Community is not just living in a place with people, or sharing particular defining characteristics with those people. It's living life with people in a manner where we become like a fabric of interlocking fibers. We are individuals, but we are part of a whole.
When was the last time you stopped?
I don't just mean pausing to catch your breath between items on your to-do list. I mean really stopped. Phone switched off, television walked away from, distractions muted, and your out-of-office switched on properly—no occasional glances “just to make sure everything’s OK.”
When was the last time you experienced that?