I find it very easy to get caught up in my own mind, to be distracted from my here and now by thoughts of what has happened and what I still need to do or face. I can't operate at my full capacity when I can't live fully in the moment. Even sitting here writing, I find myself drifting off in my mind on all sorts of twisting trails that leave me staring blankly at my screen.
I have discovered an antidote to this problem. By noticing the little things in my day, I refocus on right now. By honing in on one thing, I am more able to focus in on what else is going on in that moment. To be truly effective for me, these small things generally point me to God. That brings me back to my solid core, my peace, the security of being wholly loved no matter what the outcome of the past and future events in my head.
These "small" things tend to be in nature for me. Seeing a bird in flight, noticing the swirling shapes of the clouds, the array of hues in the sunset, the intricate detail in a flower. By far the biggest God reminder for me this year has been a feather. I wrote about the Feathers podcast as part of the Inspiration Monday: Favourite Podcasts post and how it was the feathers artwork that caught my attention first. Amy J Bennett's feather story connected to and built upon what God had already been stirring in my heart. I am reminded of God and my security in Him every time I see a feather now. I have even bought and used temporary tattoo feathers during times I needed some extra reminding.
I don't for a moment claim that God has specifically placed all of the feathers I am about to describe but He has used them to draw me into a closer relationship that is built on throughout my day, not just in my morning quiet times. I see feathers often but there are some stand out occasions:
- I was outside hanging laundry in a headspace that was full of tension, confusion and general angst. I can't remember exactly what had caused this. I was praying as I hung out washing for a touch from God. I looked up through the clear patio sheeting for some reason (I don't normally) and sitting right above my head were two feathers. I immediately felt heard, held and loved.
- I was feeling very insecure getting ready for a fancy awards night that my husband's work runs. I struggle meeting new people and making small talk. I didn't feel confident in the dress I was wearing. I pulled my dressy handbag out of the very top cupboard where it lives 99.9% of the time. I opened it to put stuff in and found two tiny feathers sticking up from the lining. I remembered Who I belong to and Whose opinion of me really counts.
- I had been having a tough time with my daughter, feeling worn out and at the end of my energy. I was sitting at the dining table giving myself some space when my daughter called out from the lounge that there was something in her mouth. She came through to me and there was a feather in her mouth! Where it came from and how it got in her mouth, I have no idea as she certainly didn't have an explanation for me. I was reminded of God in that moment and how much He gives grace to me. I was reminded of how He disciplines me and that He was with me, equipping me for the task of being a mum.
What reminds you of God in your day?
This post is part of a series called "My journey of increasing capacity" written as part of the Write 31 Days challenge. To read other posts in this series please click on the button below, in the side bar or on the Write 31 Days 2015 tab at the top.
There are hundreds of other writers doing the Write 31 Days challenge on a vast array of topics. Check them out here.