When I start to feel discontent or frustration because there are so many things about life that I can’t control, I find that if I go into the moment, into the micro aspects of my day, I can find joy again.
It’s a form of meditation, this focus on small things, that washes away the periphery of the mind, the menace of tomorrow and the downward pull of yesterday.
It is comforting to tie on the apron, feel the heat of the hot water and smell the soap. Watch the clean spaces on the counter top grow larger and feel the air clear as the mess disappears. There is nothing else more pressing at this moment than my dance with the dishes.
It is comforting to step into nature and walk a long walk, going into my head and going out into the tree shade. Or beside the busy river where visitors from around the world find my city exotic, their faces curious and satisfied by what they find.
Moment by moment, this one, this one, this one, don’t watch them as they slip by, just let go. Don’t look forward to the next one, just take it as it comes.
My desires are much smaller now than they were in my youth. My goals are attainable every day instead of someday I will take over the world. Now it is today I will take one step out of the familiar.
The big bad world goes on around me and most days it leaves me to my own devices. I’ll die an unknown, those youthful aspirations never to be fulfilled. But my instinct tells me that this silent life God has given me, with its small pleasures and spontaneous joy, is so much better than anything I would have concocted for myself.