Monday, November 17, 2014

Be still and Know

The last couple of days I have reflected on many a things that life brought my way over the last three years.  Life, friendships, heartache, cancer, divorce, new beginnings, vacation and the list goes on.  It also brought me writing.  Not something one contemplates over, but something that I learned to do as a therapy for the times I needed comfort during treatment.  Yes, writing indeed brought new insight to the trials of cancer, the treatment and the path it took me.  Tonight, I return to write once again for some therapy.  And, if any of you read my Caring Bridge blog when it was active, you might recognize the concept.

As with any normal family, my life tends to go at break neck speeds.  One kid needs to get to this place, the other across town.  I'm at work and have to get the first one when done while my wife picks up the other one.  I have tomorrow off, but gotta do something with both kids after school, and if I'm lucky, I'll get to pick up lunch and take it to my wife.  Then, after the kids are dropped off at home, I have a quick meeting via phone call that might take 20 minutes or so.  Before I know it, I'm going to bed at 11pm or later on consecutive nights.

Anybody get tired reading that like I just did?  Ha! Ha!  The above example is when there is just one kid in sports and not during baseball season.  I won't even think about trying to write down a normal day during baseball season when the son has a home game and the daughter has a track meet or swim meet.  Thankfully, the boy is gonna have his license here in a few weeks, so running him all over the place isn't going to be occurring to often.

Anyway, the frenetic pace isn't really what this blog is about.  It is just the set up.  The set up for a potential disaster.  The disaster of not taking in the beauty of life.  The gift that life brings.  The beauty of watching my kids grow into great young adults.  The joy of watching my wife pursue her passions.  The dog be the crazy (and mostly lazy) dog she is.  And, I also might miss the beauty of quite.  I might miss hearing that every once in a while.

Wait, what?  Miss the quiet?  I really did just type that.  Of course I'm gonna miss the quiet when life moves so fast.  But the sound of quiet isn't the longing for that I miss.  It is the opportunity to soak it in when I have it around me.  Sure, there might be noise emanating from various directions, but there very well could be quiet I'm not enjoying.

Do yourself a favor: sit back, lay down, prop your feet up in a recliner, so somehow just relax.  Now, close your eyes, take a deep breath in and listen for a couple minutes.  Repeat the process again and focus on what you hear.  What was it you heard?  Kids screaming?  Music?  Spouse typing on the computer?  Maybe your cell phone notifying you of another Facebook post about your move in Words with Friends.  Whatever it was, did you really hear it.

During treatment, I had ample time to hear everything.  One hour a day, I heard the laser preparing to zap me with protons.  The radio station in the back ground, the techs changing out molds the laser goes through.  I got to hear the room move (yes, the room - Gantry - rotated around me).  I even heard the laser not just get ready to zap me, I heard the laser start and end the zapping process.  But, there was one more thing I heard.

So, when you listened, what did you hear?  Psalm 46:10 says to, "Be still and know that I am God, I will be exalted."  Every day on that treatment table, I was blessed to be still.  I got to experience first hand that through my hardship he was indeed God and he was being exalted.  I was able to gain insight into what I needed to learn through the many lessons cancer was teaching me.  Though surrounded by noise, that noise became static (and helped me keep track of how long I had left on the table) and what I really heard was God being exalted.  Sometimes it was through the music being played during treatment.  Other times, it was just simply hearing the silence.  No matter though, I got the assurance that God was in control.

Answer the question.  What did you hear.  Was it the kids?  Take joy in that knowing that God is in control despite their screaming or fighting.  Take joy in the fact that one day your kids will love each other and not be afraid to show it.  If it was that annoying band your husband listens to, rest assured that he is taking joy in hearing an art that calms him down (or his helping him get amped up for his workout in the basement).  Whatever it is you heard, I pray you enjoy it.

Repeat this process again tomorrow at some point in time.

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