Wednesday, September 23, 2015

When the Days Break

Morning steals softly through the autumn mist.  Tendrils of fog wind through the mountains and settle in the evergreen branches while rain weights the air.  I want to stop here and make time stand still, just for awhile.  To hug the bright flannel tight and wrap fingers around the ceramic embers of a mug.  To spice the sodden air with coffee and spend the morning in peace.

Head still on the pillow, I nurse the wish in my head, waiting for the sharp summons of the alarm clock to smash the dream.  It feels a little bit like prison.
Quiet my heart…quiet my heart.  

But then…CRACK!

Where is quiet when the day breaks, shattered by noise that robs the sunrise of its stillness.  Amidst the shriek of the kettle and the cries of a child here I am, still hiding in my bed and grasping for a few more precious moments of rest, of that stillness.

Anchor my soul...anchor my soul.  

But how to hope when dreams stretch to snapping and weariness wears thin the heart that once swelled mighty with trust.  Sometimes it isn’t the final cut that destroys us but the gradual pulling and chaffing that eats away at the soul and chips the bones. When we rise to do battle again and again, hammering at the ghosts that wage war upon our spirit.

Peace to you…peace to you. 

Can we find the strength to pursue peace, the time to hallow even one moment at this maddening pace?  How do we tame the beast that swallows our years with hurry and binds our hearts to the earth?  In a world of day jobs and deadlines and diapers, we are restless.  In a realm hounded by rising and racing, and by fading and falling into bed each night wondering why the hours we had weren’t enough, why we weren’t enough.

Only be still…only be still.

Where can we find stillness in a hurricane of noise?  The lies of the enemy shout from all sides, and many masquerade as music.  Some nights find us wrestling with the angels, throwing questions into the sky’s void.  And sometimes it isn’t the loudness of the world that chokes out the voice of truth but the inescapable noise within our minds.

The thunder of what is fallen.  The never ending notes of the striving.  Again and again I struggle to lay down my hands and make holy the moment.  But I lift my eyes to Heaven, and once more I offer my prayer:


God with me, because I am slow to learn and weak to climb.  And when I pass through the waters, I am unarmed, soul-shattered, and swept away by the torrent of noise before I think to fling my desperate prayer towards Heaven.  But a heart filled with the spirit of his presence is life and peace, and his still voice beckons:

Come to me…come to me.

I come because his yoke is easy, and his burden is light, and in him alone will I find rest for my soul.  In the midst of sickness and schedules, he is sovereign.  When I face tomorrow and know I cannot, he is the strength that can.  The enemies lay siege to my soul, but behold, all darkness must tremble for the Lord is near.   The one that fire and stone obey and the winds call Master speaks with meekness and power into my turbulence and whispers:

Though all the earth is mine…though all the earth is mine. 

 Great is the darkness, and loud is its voice.  But the Lord sends light to carve a way through the dissonance so that men may know that there is a God in Heaven, and though he is the author of all that is, we may call him Abba, Father.  In him we have assurance and peace, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.   Sometimes, our souls ache as we lift up our offering again and again, but even in the storm:

It is well…It is well.  

When the days break, my spirit scrambles, burdened by fleeting time and the struggles of this life.  I fear the failure and the not enough.  I ache with the loss of the quiet and the delay of dreams.  The unending noise of a sin-splintered world rides on my shoulders, and my spirit is crushed by the weight of it all.

But his mercies are new every morning, so may he tune my heart to wake the dawn with my song and come into the peace of his presence.  Though a thousand false melodies clamor in my ears, may he train my ears to discern and obey the truth that sweeps the chaff from my mind and the cobwebs from my soul.

Near him I will raise my head in the quiet and hear above the loudness:


The Lord is passing by.      

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