The days have been lazy. I have felt a light breeze coming over rippled water, and watched the last rays of the sun melt over a blue lake. In shallow waters, I retrieved an oval, seagreen-colored rock. It sits now on my counter.
With one daughter, I jostled to win air hockey, while she laughed loudly and held my gaze. With the other daughter, I forded a creek we found after hiking through hushed woods. I consider that this daughter now understands something of stone crossings. Both the girls peered with me at wood sorrel, a lemony forest gift we bit into, blinking and smiling.
I read Harvest of Hope and considered the sorrow of the Killing Fields, while also discovering how my small donations can bring new life to Cambodia and other places across the world. I started yet another journey into my childhood past, with a book called The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce. I made it halfway through Lynne Baab's book Sabbath Keeping. Indeed, I have kept Sabbath and feel the better for it.
In Baab's book, I found and savored this from Wayne Muller:
Sabbath is a time to stop....To stop working, stop making money, stop spending money. See what you have. Look around. Listen to your life. Do you really need more than this? Spend a day with your family. Instead of buying the new coffee maker, make coffee in the old one and sit with your spouse on the couch, hang out— do what they do in the picture [in the advertisement] without paying for it. Just stop. That is, after all, what they are selling in the picture: people who have stopped. You cannot buy stopped. (p.62)
It is true that you cannot buy what I found over my extended Sabbath. You cannot buy a deep breath, which is precisely what I took. And you cannot buy the free gift of rest, which is a new readiness. Yes, thanks to the gift of rest, I feel ready for the days to come.
Rose of Sharon in Rain photo, by L.L. Barkat.
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