We celebrated going back to school last week with a dinner out at our local tavern. I used to ask the kids pretty regularly how they’ve grown in their bodies, minds and spirits, and that soon became an occasion for lots of eye rolling and audible moans. But they seemed somewhat willing to indulge me when I asked them if they think they grew at all this summer. Marilee (age 8) mentioned her new ability to do a handstand into a bridge. William (age 11) talked about learning how to chop wood at camp. Penny (age 13) celebrated swimming out to the raft at our local beach at high tide.
It led me to ask myself the same thing. In this different season, where did I learn or grow? My first thought was that I ran a mile faster than I have in decades, but more importantly I learned something about keeping an easy pace most of the time and only pushing every so often.
And I spent a lot of time (for me!) sitting in silence, opening myself up to listen to God’s gentle whisper throughout my days. It’s that practice–of setting a timer for 10-20 minutes, holding my palms open on my lap, and repeating a phrase like “I am open to love” or “God is love” that has anchored my days and expanded my soul. Certainly worth celebrating with a salad and some french fries and this gift of a family.