Sleeping At Last – I’ll Keep You Safe

It occurs to me now there must be a horde of crickets around here, a true multitude, in order to create such a chorus. There’s a continual, comforting drip at the back window, too. There have been too few nights this summer cool enough to keep the windows open. And here we are: August in conclusion, all sticking humid and picking up speed toward September.

I was reminded this week that I perform well under pressure. Call it procrastination, whatever – I thrive on a day that is packed and swinging from meeting to meeting. The reminder was well-timed, because things really are picking up after a summer of relative leisure both at and outside work, and it’s a pace I’ve appreciated.

We recently learned some “high context” cultures communicate not only with words but also the feelings and intentions behind them. In order to communicate well, one must listen to the words and read the air between them. This might well characterize my summer. It’s been filled with all sorts of restful and restorative experiences – front porching, biking, reading, road tripping, dancing. And I have been squinting my eyes, turning down the volume in order to pay attention to what’s going on “between the lines”.

I don’t want to lose that in this next season. I want to carry it with me like I carry the sweetness of being near my people this summer. Humans are fragile – not in a way that needs rescuing. Humans are fragile and gifted with senses and feelings. We acknowledge beauty, feel pain, experience loneliness, know contentment as peach juice runs down our fingers. When I put up walls of distraction so characteristic of busy seasons, I no longer feel, or I save it for an eruption of feeling with my home team.

I’m convinced that when I’m paying attention to the world around me and creating the space to listen to God, I’m more available and able to respond to his direction. I want to pray with awareness instead of reaction, to notice the hurting and the broken voices all around. So I’m turning down the noise, and carrying with me some quiet space and restful practices. I want to be ready.


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