The secret is to be still. To take your time. There is absolutely no rush than what you are doing. To observe. To explore. To be.
We've been living outside! I know it's only about ten degrees cooler but it's cooler. And we have missed outside. It's been a long three months couped up inside. Fall is my absolute favorite season and winter. Spring is eh. Summer is torture. You will find us outside from now until May.
I've been watching as Jman has been changing lately. His imagination is exploding and I just watch and listen to the stories and worlds he is creating. I join in, when invited. Today I gave them hose and a shovel and watched them come up with whatever. There were rivers made, a party was thrown and we had to get everything ready for our guests, puddle jumping, mud pies made and so on. As all kids do they can move 90 miles an hour or suddenly be completely slow in their actions.
As RC was throwing mud on me and attack hugging me I saw Jman grab the smallest of lids, use it as a scoop to fill up a cup, to transfer to a large barrell and repeat. I watched him over and over. Take his time, work slowly, not letting anything distract him. We had large shovels out, buckets of all kinds of things that could have made this easier. Yet he chose the smallest of lids, sat, dug, scooped as carefully and as long as it took him. He had no problem going slow, not rushing, just being and focusing on one thing. Concentration.
As an adult it would be easy to jump in and distract him. Saying here use this, it's bigger, it will be faster, or why don't you do this instead, or even as dreadful as why are you doing this? What's the point? All of these silly questions are adult questions. We don't need to know why. Maybe there's a reason maybe not. I've learned from my boys, usually it's not about what or why, it's really just to see if I can, to see what would happen, and honestly boys don't think about why first, they think why later. For J it was about the process not the product. Maybe it was to see if he could fill up the big bucket. Who knows. I was not going to disrupt this and ask. But his reason is valid and important. He didn't need me to rush him, like we like to do with our kids. Hurry. Hurry. Hurry. They don't need us to push our distractions on them. Or our time table. What we should do is slow down and join them. Because they know a secret that time is precious. Distractions are silly. They take away the beauty right in front of us. For me in that moment it was watching my beautiful son. For him that beauty was a beautiful pile of mud. Big squishy mud that he had created.
We spend so much time distracted and rushing we are missing so much. It's just like with God, we are rushing that we are missing the beauty, we are missing Him. "Be still and know that I am God". How often do you forget that when you are rushing or distracted? For me it's constantly. He wants us to slow down, to focus on him. Children know this secret. They don't need to be reminded. They know it and appreciate it and they are one of the ways God reminds us to be still. Stop today. Truly stop and enjoy the blessing of being still. If you need help ask your child how. We think they are missing out if they don't hurry and go here or there but really we are the ones missing out.
Stop. Listen. Observe. Explore.