Driving in to work Friday morning, I was caught up in all that was on my to-do list for the day. Lost already in the business and the busy-ness of the day and not even at work yet. It was the last day of Spring Break; classes for the spring quarter start on Monday. Although the campus had been empty of students this week, we experienced no shortage of visitors. Our researchers know that parking is far easier when the students are on break. Hoping for quiet moments to get caught up, I planned to tuck away the remains of last quarter and get a head-start on the next. If lucky, I might even begin to make a dent in the piles on the side of my desk, ever patiently waiting for attention.
But as I rounded the curve in the road, the final turn before the parking lot and the start of my day, seven or eight deer stood, contentedly grazing away on the newly-green splotches of grass near the woods. Thankfully, no one was behind me as I stopped in the middle of the road, hoping the deer were not thinking of getting into the soon-to-be busy stretch of road. As I fumbled for my phone to get a picture, the one closest to me looked me dead on, as if assessing my worthiness to share in their moment of peace. And when I snapped this shot, I had the distinct feeling I had not passed the test.
I thought about that later in the evening, as I transferred my day’s pictures to the computer. How in the middle of my busy-ness, I had been offered a moment of peace, a moment of beauty. A moment that I quickly captured and tucked away, planning on enjoying it later when I looked at my pictures. I wondered about how often I do that. Postpone a proffered respite, look past what is here and now, lost in the pace of living, and not enjoying what is right before me, at the moment it is there.
It reminded me of a short note I found in the middle of one of my mother’s notebooks. She kept a small mountain of blank journals around, filling them with her thoughts and writings as the mood struck her. I have most of them on a shelf in my office. As my photos transferred and backed-up onto the various hard drives, I sent in search of the passage teasing my memory. And I found it, almost on the first try:
God is Good
He didn’t just allow me the privilege of knowing the people in my life, but each day has filled my cup to overflowing with blessings many times before I could even think to ask for them.
But also with enough rain to make the flowers grow, to help me appreciate others, to help me to understand others, to help me appreciate what I have without asking for more, to have friends like you, and to accept each day as it comes, remembering they all still come from Him.
How often do we let the little moments in life pass us right by in the busy-ness of living?
My answer was staring back at me as the deer gave one last glance before turning and disappearing back into the woods with its companions. A reminder to take a breath, to be thankful for everything that is in my life, and to celebrate moments as they happen. And most of all, to be grateful for the privilege of knowing all the people who share their lives with me.