Looking out the window in the early morning, the rest of the house still asleep, I focused on the massive pecan tree in my yard. I watched for signs of life as the day began to wake up.
Birds generally sing their songs while squirrels play chase and dig for fallen pecans, but this morning was different. Nothing was stirring. No signs of life at all. I had been there awhile. Been watching for a scurry or a flutter, but nothing. This was very unusual. So unusual I wondered if there was a message for me in the stillness.
I asked God about that. Is there something I need to hear? Need to see? Anything I am missing here?
I was immediately impressed with this thought:
Look for signs of life all throughout your day as hard and focused as you are looking now.
Wow. I understood that as a directive to prioritize my focus on the life in people, the life in relationships, that might not be so obvious. Perhaps I would see some life I had even written off as dead.
Leaning back in my chair, I accepted the challenge. And suddenly it hit me.
My focus had been on the trunk of this huge tree where squirrels usually run up, down, and all around chasing each other. I was looking for life signs I was used to seeing when life had been in front of me the whole time. Life was in this steady, sturdy tree.
That big, beautiful, immovable tree, probably 100 years old or more, doesn’t move, scurry or flutter. But it gives shade in the heat of summer, shelter to many fun-to-watch creatures, and is an ever-present climbing joy to my kids and grandkids.
Shade, shelter, and joy.
And I missed it because it was still.
What a lesson.
A visual reminder that while hurrying and scurrying are fun and entertaining, they pale in comparison to the steadfast and immovable.
Then there it was! A squirrel running along the top of the fence behind the tree. I chuckled. It was a sign of life hard to miss because of its movement, but a sign of life I am grateful was late showing up so I could see what I was missing.
I will be watching for the steady and immovable around me today. And more days. In people who are exceptionally quiet, and in relationships that don’t move at the pace I have preferred.
I have a new appreciation for the quiet.
In a world where the unknown has become the norm, steady, sturdy, and immovable holds a certain kind of peace and grounding. Like the presence of God. It’s one thing in our world we can count on. And it’s enough.
Brenda Harkins is a believer in impossible possibilities. In brokenness becoming beautiful. In justice and mercy and honor and power – with love perfecting them all. As a Speaker, Author, Mediator, and Professional Coach, Brenda is highly focused on the power of communication. Her confidence, clarity, and courage to transform challenges into victories were the catalyst for creating Loud Is Not A Language®, a communication model that is actually a challenge to transform you. Become more you. Building strong, resilient, respectful relationships at the same time.