“Like Steven Chase says, “absence sharpens our seeking: it sets the tone and temper of our attentiveness.” God in the Yard (chapter 7)
I have been absent from the yard.
The holidays, my daughter’s surgery and hospitalization, and caring for my grandgirls during her recovery have messed with my schedule and self-time.
Oh, I’ve made brief forays to fill the feeders, get the mail, take out the trash, and wander around a bit.
But mostly I’ve gazed out from in.
There’s been a dormancy midst the busyness.
An imposed separation.
A hibernation of sorts.
Sleeping while awake.
I miss His presence in the yard.
It seems colder. I haven’t able to get truly warm in spite of inching up the thermostat.
And I think I’m eating more.
Like the birds.
The girls and the cats and I scurry from window to window to watch them.
It’s time to replenish the seed.
I slide down the glassy drive, mindful of the fact that Dennis fell the other night.
He worried more about his suit pants.
I worry about breaking another bone.
I walk back and forth on top of snow that crunches under my feet like crushed peanut shells at the Texas Roadhouse.
It’s too cold to breathe through my nose, and my teeth ache as the air flows past. My fingers fumble with the feeders.
Dried plumes bow frozen. Some shrubs stand stark while others peek from under their quilts or try to creep under the porch. Shadow branches dance, and the sun crawls behind a blanket of clouds, hiding its presence, as if too cold to shine.
The world has gone cold and dormant for a season. Winter is needful for the new birth of spring and the fullness of summer.
“Cycles in nature provide healthy rhythms of presence and absence that, overall, add up to fertility and perpetuation, ongoing presence.” ~God in the Yard
The disciples had to experience Jesus’ absence in order for them (and us) to experience His ongoing presence.
“Lord, let me learn the rhythms of presence, which may include seasons of absence. Let me not be afraid, but remember that you and I are always together, even when it seems we are apart.” ~God in the Yard
Today, in the yard, in the cold, I found presents, gifts of His presence. Waiting for me.
L.L. shares a story from Billy Coffey about “two people who considered every red light a perfect excuse to kiss.”
“To experience presence, the first requirement is to show up. We aren’t going to get kissed in the car if we spend all our days puttering in the garage. The second requirement in experiencing presence is to provide moments to breathe.” ~God in the Yard
Today I showed up and braked long enough to look and to see, to breathe in Him (albeit through frozen teeth) and pay attention to His gifts.
I stopped long enough to let Him kiss me.
I experienced His presence.
Praying that you will take time to brake and breathe long enough this weekend to experience His presence.
Where can I go from your Spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. ~Psalm 139:7-9
Linking this post to Peter Pollock’s Blog Carnival on Winter.