About 3 months ago, Connie Plummer (a fellow staffer) sent me something to remind me of the importance of pausing occasionally in life. It was so relevant, I asked her for permission to use it as a guest post. So pause for a moment and enjoy these wise words about pausing from Connie Plummer.
My husband is a master at finding a place for us. A place that’s serene and out of the way. Our day to days are respectively filled with people who need and deserve our attention, pretty much around the clock. Add the ever present emails, texts, and calls from the never far from us phones, and ‘serene’ is pretty difficult to achieve otherwise.
A trip last year to our favorite quiet beach, our favorite little rental that looks for the world like I would have decorated it, if it were mine to do that, is such a time. And as we sit on the porch overlooking the Atlantic on a cloudless early morning, it happens. The sky lightens, then brightens, as the solar alarm clock prepares to show up for all the world to awaken. But just before it breaks the horizon, just before the gentle pinks of that sky meeting ocean place change to flaming orange, comes the pause. The sea birds seem to be the first to honor it. Then a couple of people wandering along the water’s edge catch the spirit of the moment. The breeze drops like a reverent worshiper would take a knee. And as we sit and savor our respective mugs of coffee and tea, it feels almost inappropriate to even breathe, let alone speak. And for that moment my entire world feels strangely focused, uncluttered by the busyness from which I had escaped the night before.
But this trip was an entirely different direction. The mountains. Beginning our workday with a five o’clock wake up, and an event of a thousand plus people, driving away at midday is more like we are stealing a car and trying to get out of town before anyone is on to us. And when we get to a new and unfamiliar cabin cozied up to a no longer used railroad track and a serene lake, I realize we are there again. Not ‘there’ as in returning to a physical location, because my husband searched for the spot online and we are depending on directions to even locate the place. But we are there in a place where it’s just us. A quick scout of our abode, we are off for an explore down the tracks. Everywhere we look the trees are just before budding out with the stuff of spring. From under last fall’s lumpy carpet of foliage and pine needles peek leaves of three, and leaves of four, and the tender blades that are that singular shade of green that is never seen once summer hits. This time we are not awaiting a sunrise, for it is well into this April afternoon. Instead, we stand on a very different edge. And once again the world is on the brink of something big, and something spectacular, and no less subtle than an impending sunrise. Once again we are there to witness it, now sitting quietly, side by side and knowing that, if we wait, we will see the green of a new season take over where there is little life. We pause.
Seems to me that the pause I see in nature should be logically natural; something I do with commitment and planning. Because, at the pause there is time to measure who I am, where I am going, who I am with, and Who guides me. And yet I am transparent enough with my own self to know that the pause gets put aside far too often. Today I will remember. The pause is good. Restful. Restoring. Necessary. Pause.
Psalm 46:10 – Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations. I will be exalted in the earth! ((Yes, HE will!)
Connie Plummer is an educator and minister to both children and families. She has a bachelors degree in education with post graduate studies in special education. She’s the former Minister to Children at Warren Baptist Church in Augusta, GA. To find out more about Connie and her work, follow her on Twitter (@connieplummer).