Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Confession time! One of the most difficult things I find to do is being fully present.

I find myself repeatedly  having to yank my attention back into the moment.

I have to drag my thoughts away from everything else that calls---and turn again to the person or task before me.

In a splendid book I am reading there is a chapter simply titled, All There. In this chapter the authors talk about presence as a present to ourselves. They write: " we learn to live in the present, we see and feel all of creation more fully. God's gifts have always been there, of course. As the Psalms describe, "The heavens declare the glory of God." They point out that when our attention dwells elsewhere the gifts from God are largely lost to us.
Earth's crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God:
But only he who sees, takes off his shoes.

Professor Leo Buscaglia recounts the true story of a little boy whose neighbor's wife passed away. Seeing that the elderly man was heartbroken and grieving, the boy's mother warned her son not to bother the neighbor.It wasn't long before the mother noticed the little boy crossing into the neighbor's yard and climbing up into the old man's lap. He remained there for some time, sitting quietly. When the boy returned home, his mother met him with her hands on her hips. "I told you not bother him," she gently scolded. "What were you doing?' The little fellow shook his head. "I wasn't doing anything," he answered. "I was just helping him cry."

Missionary martyr Jim Elliot summed it up well, "Wherever you are, be all there."