We traveled a lot in September (to Ohio and Canada), so I wasn't surprised when Nicholas and I both craved more quiet days at home. Lately, I'll catch myself deep in thought—not melancholy really—just what I call mellow. A lot. This type of mood can leave me feeling unmoored or unanchored. Or, it can be used for good: for prayer and quiet reflection that's not muddled by distractions.
There's something freeing in the practice of this reverence, to use a different term. If we consider reverence to be the act of pausing, exhaling, and then breathing deep the truth of God's promises. In other words, allowing His promises to clear the air when we know that clear air often leads to a clearer mind.
These mellow/reverent days are generally productive. I'm running errands, doing chores around our home, and other work with my hands, but not my mind. And I'm again reminded that I benefit from direction and purpose and a bit of reverence in all areas of my life: creativity, maintaining our home, care of my body, getting exercise, planning for the future, and care of my heart. A few ways this reverence (and a little planning) has played out for good lately:
- I've started a new little daily workout: essentially a series of lunges, crunches, pushups, squats, etc. It's quick, and each day has a specific "set" to do, so I don't feel lost, as I tend to do if my workouts don't have direction. Also, I've got accountability, as my sister-in-law and a few friends are also doing it. Good idea, Jessica!
- I'm taking a break from a current knitting project that brought me no joy. It's hard for me to set aside something incomplete (even if just temporarily), but after I did, lo and behold, I'm into knitting again! I find my creativity waxes and wanes, depending on my mood, my free time allowances, and my excitement about WIPs (works in progress). I just started a few new projects and it feels so good to be creating and enjoying it.
- Nicholas and I are starting up our night walks again, now that's beginning to cool off at night. We set a rough goal to walk together every evening on days I don't work (so 4x/week).
- Organizing the pantry. Opening it to find happy organization is the best.
- Journaling & reading my Bible first thing in the morning on my days off. Sometimes I start this even before Nicholas gets up, and certainly before breakfast and coffee. His Word fills me up, even before breakfast does. If I do it over my coffee, I'm easily distracted by coffee prep, dirty dishes, etc. But if I do it immediately, my day begins peacefully, joyfully, with an intentional resting in His Words.
- Sitting down with a lavender latte and knitting at a coffee shop while Nicholas is at a meeting. I haven't done this as much recently, as it's been tempting to stay home and "be productive," whatever that means. Instead, I went with Nicholas and tried out a new-to-me coffee shop, since I've long been a fan of the solo coffee date. It was so great to sit in silence and just sip, sip, knit. And take a selfie in the bathroom mirror, because, why not?
Yesterday, I was listening to Captain, by Hillsong United:
Through waters uncharted my soul will embark
Like the wind, You'll guide.
Clear the skies before me
And I'll glide this open sea
Like the stars Your word will align my voyage
and remind me where I've been
and where I am going
Those are specifics to my life, yes. But what about the grand scheme of life? The who, what, why, when, how of life? I don't need to know exactly where I'm going in order to have peace about the voyage. God knows, and I know HIM, and He gave us His words in a wonderful book, and that really is enough to find freedom in. If I need a few mellow days here and there to rest in that truth, then so be it. The practice becomes sustainable, if I make a conscious effort to rest in Him in the midst of daily life, even as I sort rice and flours and snacks in the pantry. I can be resting and thriving. Or rather, I thrive when I rest in His promises.