I came across this in my writing inbox today. Last year I tried to keep up with the 30 Days of Thankfulness Challenge. This year, I decided to do something different and this seems to be a perfect fit.
I’m already a few days behind. Typically my days are pretty much mine to schedule as I desire, but November has not started out that way. Moving our last child out of the nest has been much more time and energy consuming than I imagined it would be. Rather than try to catch up, I’ll just start with the question listed for today. It reads: What is one thing I can do today to promote a gentle and quiet spirit?
I live in a small town in central Minnesota. It is “bustling” enough to support a Walmart Supercenter, a Target, a Cub Foods grocery store and a small Coborns grocery store. We also have way too many fast food restaurants–Arby’s, KFC, Tack Johns, McDonalds, Culvers, Subway, Jimmy Johns, and Dairy Queen–as well as a few chain establishments–Perkins and Applebees. Of course there are a few small local deli type restaurants as well. Downtown is known for its occasional shops, open once a month only or for special occasions. But, for me, the best attribute of this place I call home is Buffalo Lake. It sits downtown, has a beautiful walking path lined with weatherproof musical instruments, a beach (although I wouldn’t swim in this lake) with rental canoes and paddleboats, and a playground and picnic shelter. Located along the path one will find benches to sit, rest, and admire the view of the lake. In summer, it is dotted with fishing boats; in the winter the entire lake freezes and ice fishermen set up fish houses almost in neighborhoods. The beach becomes an ice skating rink for open skating and the rails along the pathway are decorated with twinkling Christmas lights and garland. To go and sit at the lake, in summer or winter, provides a quietness for which my spirit often longs and certainly appreciates when indulged. I haven’t taken my journal and Bible to the lake in a while and I’m thinking it’s time I did just that. To hear the water lap onto the shore, to watch the seagulls swoop in search of food, and to rest in the beauty God chose to adorn a small town in the center of a state most forget even exists is almost a guarantee that, at least for a time will promote a gentle and quiet spirit within.