Monday I was surprised by joy. Joy came dressed as Darth Vader, superman and a dancer's sparkled tutu.
I thought I was entering a scheduled meeting at 8:00 before work at my friend and pastor's home, but the door opened to reveal young women in my weekly Bible study with - here's the best part - their babies and toddlers in their pajamas! They were having a surprise birthday breakfast complete with hot biscuits, delicious breakfast foods and festive decor. I quickly calculated that they had driven from Flora, Madison and Jackson with their little ones early that morning and had successfully hidden cars - all before 8 a.m. Happy tears brimmed and rolled from my eyes when I realized the gift of their time to show love and friendship.
We learn so much about life from one another. One young mom - I'll call her Jenn - owns a vineyard with her husband. (Today she baked giant homemade almond sugar cookies the size of old fashioned tea cakes with homemade fig preserves and blueberry jam in the thumbprint. Look for the recipe here soon.) She has two elementary daughters and had a baby several years later. When asked around our party/breakfast table, 'Is anything different the second around with your children?' she paused and spoke a memorable reply:
"I enjoy the simplicity of putting socks on."This, from a woman who was a Louisiana lawyer, is a fabulous wordsmith, and can prune a vineyard in February with one hand tied behind her back. This young mom can enjoy the simplicity of the smallest, most routine acts of mothering. I began to think on that.
How many of us rush through our days unable to savor life's simple pleasures? Why do we act as though there is a prize for the one who races through life first and arrives - breathless - at the finish line? We may not get another chance to replay the scene. I've read the book: The tortoise wins the race every time!
Find something simple to enjoy today. Bring your self to that task, no matter how well you can do it on autopilot. In fact, disengage autopilot and live fully in the present. We can still be productive and efficient, but I suggest that we will enjoy the experience so much more. I am convinced that it is not the length of our to-do list, but the attitude we bring to the task that determines how well we accomplish what we do.
Slow me down, Lord. Show me how to savor simple pleasures. Amen.