I realize that most of my readers are a generation younger than I am. That's okay with me; it even delights me, since if you've read my profile or my "mission statement" you know that I'm all about speaking to the next generation and the generation after that.
Let us once more meander and savor the sweetness of life.
But if you're nearer my age, or if you have a special appreciation for how your life is going to change as you near my age, every now and then I'll have something to say to you, too.
Around the time of my 50th birthday, Lyric and I were shopping in a little place up in the Hill Country, and I found a little book called Freedoms After 50 by Sue Patton Thoele. Some of the contents are a little too fuzzy for my palate, but there are some gems that have really helped me look at my season in life with joy and appreciation. Today, I read this...
God did not create hurry...
Do you remember front porches or side yards furnished with comfy swings, gliders, or rocking chairs? As a kid I spent untold number number of hours "doing nothing" in our front porch swing. I often went there to be comforted by the rocking rhythm when I was experiencing sadness or pain. In that swing I savored both solitude and solace. Luckily, I had other places to meander for adventure and exploration, as I imagine you did also.
As children, we intuitively know that meandering and savoring are good for our souls. It is only as adults, besieged by demands on our time and energy, that we succumb to the tendency to scurry and gulp. Let us hope that after we reach fifty, those demands have lessened and we can slow down and let our souls catch up with our bodies.
When I was growing up, my grandmother had a glider swing on the covered patio in the back yard. It was big enough for three to sit on, but it was the perfect size for one person to lie down on, and I much preferred doing that to sharing it with two others. Grandma's back yard was a paradise, the perfect atmosphere for a kid to just "be." I can remember times in my late teens, even as I felt the cares of grownup life creeping in and crowding out my childhood, I'd escape to the swing and spend an hour or two trying to squeeze every carefree moment out of the time I had left.
Grandma's gone now. So is the swing. What's not gone is my need to retreat to a place of safety and comfort and just "be." The House is pretty heavily occupied much of the time and finding solitude is not easy...but often it's more a state of mind than a reflection of the surroundings. I want to work at creating an atmosphere where folks can slow down and savor every moment. I don't want them all to have to wait until they're fifty...