The year of the plague is upon us, but I need a rest. Rest from newscasts, cooking, cleaning, eating, binge-watching Netflix, Zoom calls, and everything else that I use to try to cope with my thoughts that sometimes won’t quit. These activities are helpful, but they can be just another way of blocking out being in the present moment. 

I snapped the shot below last week while walking with my foster dog in Fontainebleau Park in nearby Mandeville, Louisiana. The dog is gone. I regret to say I am a foster failure. She really was not all that much trouble, but I was concerned about the accidents, daily, in the house. Since the bedrooms are carpeted, I closed those rooms to her. But, I was careless with closing doors, so she left stains. She went back to the humane society for an appointment with prospective owners who wanted a forever dog. 

I hoped it worked out for the dog and the prospective clients because I didn’t take her back home with me. I might try another foster dog, but I have to better prepare myself and the house for a nervous, confused animal to be with me, being a somewhat nervous, confused human in these times At least, though, not yet anyway, I am not yet staining the carpets. 


When I look at the photograph above, it reminds me of words from Eugene Peterson’s Bible translation, “Learn the unforced rhythms of grace,” from Matthew 11:29-30. I need to establish a rhythm of grace: doing things, yes, but sometimes, just being present in the moment.


6 thoughts on “Rest

  1. Dog poop. That’s the sole reason I don’t have a dog. Maybe one day someone will invent a dog that recycles his poop inside somewhere, turning it into dog energy. The poop never sees the light of day.

    Nice photo. Makes me homesick.


  2. “Being present in the moment” is a very good description of the Quaker goal to find “peace at the center.”

    It sounds as if we share one of the vices that gets in the way of those unforced rhytrhms of grace that we can only discover by setting aside busy-ness and listening silently. It is a daily struggle, And what is worse, I know what I need to do, and then do just the opposite. Paul, at least, had that correct.

    Thanks for the reminder.

    And thank you even more for “I am not yet staining the carpets.” The phrase has the ring of Florence King. You southern gals do know how to turn a phrase.


  3. Speaking of finding the center, I am reminded of a great song, Jesus, Be the Center, by Michael Frye. The Spanish version is good too, Eres El Centro by La Viña. I appreciate the reference to Florence King.


  4. What a beautiful photo! I’f I was there I would want to be present in the moment!

    In this covid time I’d rather be remembering life as it was, like when I could make travel plans freely, and know I could hug my children and grandchildren when I choose… go out to dinner at the spur of the moment… I’m thinking, living in memories of the recent past can be better at this time….


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