Staring Allowed

When I was young, I used to come out of my bedroom in the morning and find my grandmother quietly seated at the kitchen table. She would sit with her elbows resting on the table, a mug of coffee in her hands, and her eyes fixed on our pasture out the back window.

Sometimes I would try to slither on the floor in order to sneak around and startle her from behind. She never seemed to break her gaze from the window, but I somehow never seemed to give her much of a scare. Maybe she really did have eyes in the back of her head?

Armchair Solitude

Years later, I find myself doing the same thing. I have a favorite chair in front of a window, looking out over a wooded area of our front yard. When I can, I like to sit there with a cup of coffee or tea and write in my journal. Sometimes I read or pray quietly. At the very least, I will often sit in this quiet place and watch for my boys to get off the bus in the afternoon. Even just a few minutes of watching tree branches sway, the birds fluttering, and the squirrels chattering can bring peace into a chaotic life. It can bring to mind scriptures such as:

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”  -Matthew 6:25-27 (New International Version)

This is the practice of meditation and solitude in it’s simplest form. Create a place in your home where you can turn your back (even for a moment) on your tasks and duties. Let God’s creation inspire you to chew on scripture. Lift up an offering of praise to God and let Him touch your heart with a sense of His love.

Just don’t forget, if you have children in your home… turn on those eyes in the back of your head!

Winter Window photo courtesy of  starmist1. For public use on flickr.

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