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Pondering and Listening

Saturday morning and it is raining hard, tapping on skylights and cascading from gutters.

The hills are shrouded in a curtain of mist. It is the perfect morning to cocoon.

I enjoy the quiet of the house; a stillness unbroken from the inside by even the hum of dryer or distant chatter of a program on T.V..

Yesterday children and grandchildren filled the house. Shreds of wrapping paper and empty boxes surrounded the Christmas tree. Carols played on the stereo in the background, mixing with the sound of children's voices, laughter and play, and the murmur of conversation. It was a wonderful day.

But I cherish the post-celebration hush that descends. It is a time to reflect; to ponder the old and listen for the new.

As I washed Brussels sprouts and rolled out pastry while preparing for our family Christmas dinner, I listened to an audio book by author and speaker Matthew Kelly. I heard him speak at the Lead Like Jesus conference I attended in October and found him a dynamic speaker so I was delighted when Irene gave me his book, The Rhythm of Life on C.D.

Matthew shared three rules by which he lives. The rules grew out of the recovery period after a total emotional, spiritual and physical meltdown while still a young man. He was a victim of his own success and had not learned how to say "No," to the too many opportunities that came his way to do good.

One of his rules is to have a daily time of prayer and reflection on scripture that he calls his Sacred Hour. I love this name for a couple of reasons:

1) The fact that it is "sacred," which means set apart, or holy, in the sense that it is precious, important and non-negotiable by implication.
2) The fact that he specifies "hour" as part of the description. It precludes shortchanging oneself with a few minutes grabbed with God. The word "hour," makes me feel that the time is safe, bordered in, unrushed, protected.

I aim to build the Sacred Hour into my life. Logic tells me that if God gives me 24 in a day, I should surely be able to spend one with him. I also know my tendency to fritter time away. Dear friends, stay tuned!

2 Corinthians 4:18 (New International Version)
18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

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