Thursday, September 5, 2013

Mindful Moments

I started out Labor Day weekend by making a to-do list.  Why do I do that to myself?

After running errands and cleaning on Friday, I spent Saturday watching Mystery Inc. with the girls.  I did run 12.5 miles, so I did accomplish something.

But why am I justifying that to you?

Why can’t I simply enjoy a well-deserved day of nothing?

The girls had a sleepover Sunday night with Billy’s parents.  When I found out that we wouldn’t be picking them up until 4:30 on Monday, I stalled out.

I already completed two tasks that I needed the kids to be out of the house for-going through their old school work and cleaning out a closet with unknown contents.  Let me explain.  My kids (Lucy more so) like to hold onto “stuff.”  They would justify keeping every piece of paper in the stack.  And while I value teaching them how to do things like clean up and get rid of things, at times, I need to go through the stack myself.  And the closet with unknown contents…well…maybe I hid something in there before taking it to Goodwill.  I didn’t want to risk it.

Once that was done, I wasn’t sure what to do. 

I scrambled to come up with something.  And nothing came.  I didn’t want to start a new project.

But I couldn’t simply be.

I hesitated to turn on the computer.  I’ve been down the Pinterest rabbit hole too much.  I didn’t want to see my day disappear there.

In fact, after Billy and I were done with our projects, I made us leave the house so we wouldn’t get sucked into the computer or tv. 

We went for a walk.  In my happy place.  And still I was restless.

I thought back to the book that I read a few months ago by Jen Hatmaker that make me start thinking, what if…

One of the “experiments” in the book is taking moments out of the day to be mindful, to express gratitude, to be present.  This was something that immediately drew me in because at times, my entire day slips away.  And not necessarily because of the usual time wasters (internet), but simply because I haven’t been mindful of the world around me.  I haven’t been present.  Jen Hatmaker used a book of meditations for these moments of reflection.

I thought of this restlessness in my heart the other day, and how moments of reflection might help me stay more grounded, peaceful.

So the question of what if…came up again.  What if I took moments out of my day to be mindful of the day and world around me?  What if I used these moments to express gratitude for the day behind me and seek wisdom for the remaining day ahead?

I don’t have a book of daily meditations.  I was drawn by something else.  A traditional hymn, Lord of All Hopefulness.  I only heard this a month ago, and when I did, it spoke to my soul, as music sometimes does.  Each verse seemed fitting for a meditation for each part of my day.

Lord of all hopefulness, Lord of all joy,

Whose trust, ever childlike, no cares could destroy,

Be there at our waking, and give us, we pray,

Your bliss in our hearts, Lord, at the break of the day.

Lord of all eagerness, Lord of all faith,

Whose strong hands were skilled at the plane and the lathe,

Be there at our labors, and give us, we pray,

Your strength in our hearts, Lord, at the noon of the day.

Lord of all kindliness, Lord of all grace,

Your hands swift to welcome, your arms to embrace,

Be there at our homing, and give us, we pray,

Your love in our hearts, Lord, at the eve of the day.

Lord of all gentleness, Lord of all calm,

Whose voice is contentment, whose presence is balm,

Be there at our sleeping, and give us, we pray,

Your peace in our hearts, Lord, at the end of the day.

I tried to link this to a youtube video with singing, but I wasn’t really jazzed about any of the clips.  I do like this ukulele version, so click here, if you would like to listen to it.

This leaves me with that what if… question again.  What if I spent a few moments of reflection during the day?  Would this bring me peace?  Would this calm a restless spirit?  Would I be more awake?

I think I will take this particular what if out for a spin.  I’ll keep you posted on how it goes.

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