Thoughts from Community Ministry, May 2018

Rev. Sue Magidson

“Take time to look.” These words of Georgia O’Keeffe hang on my refrigerator. It’s such a wise and simple spiritual practice – taking the time to deeply engage one of our senses – and it’s so easy to forget.

It’s spring and I’m looking at the wonder unfolding around me. As I walk through my neighborhood, I delight in catching bare twigs just starting to sprout – a flower here or leaf there. How does a seemingly dead wisteria vine suddenly burst forth with flowers? And what about the baby oak leaves – barely a half inch long at first. It’s hard to believe that they’ll increase tenfold before they’re full size.

Spring is a particular pleasure, but trees are my salvation, with or without leaves. After a difficult hospital visit, I go outside and look at a tree, watching each tree dance to its own rhythm as the breeze wafts through its branches. I look, and look, and am restored.

What helps restore you? Is it looking intently with your eyes? Running your fingers through your pet’s fur – not absent-mindedly, but with your full attention? Burying your nose in jasmine or freesia? Truly savoring a single bite of food? Listening to music – without doing anything else?

Take time to look, dear ones. Take time to look and sniff and taste and feel and listen. Wonder is all around us.