Well I did not intend to go this long without posting a new perk, but the last few weeks have been pretty busy. I love saying that though. I’ve been busy. I’ve been busy spending time with newer friends, traveling to see family, community groups, working out, work, and although it’s been a bit tiring, I’ve enjoyed being on the go. Winter and laziness have been my worst enemies, so I’m thankful that spring is FINALLY here and I’ve been more inclined to be out and about.
I decided a few weeks ago what I wanted to write about for this new post. It’s encouraging how God seems to open my eyes to something new to be thankful about during this stage when it’s time for me to get writing again. This time, He has pointed out the peace and quiet I can enjoy right now. This is more about the fact that I’m not a mother yet, and do not have young kids that need my constant care and attention.
I will say, I do love family noise. I was able to travel to North Carolina the first weekend of this month to see some family that came in for my cousin’s baby shower. I have a lot of cousins, and most of them I don’t get to see very often, since we are all so spread out. A few of my cousins have young kids as well, so when all of my family get together and there are babies to hold, young cousins running around playing, and cousins, aunts, and uncles sitting around the dining room table sharing stories and laughter, those are the moments I cherish. I remember sitting at the table, surrounded by family and so much love, and I remember thinking “Lord, thank you so much for this right here.” I love the family chaos, and I wish we could all get together more often.
But as much as I love family noise, for the time being, I get to come home to my quiet house and enjoy the peace of solitude after a busy weekend. I can relax in front of my tv, take a nap, and enjoy right now that no one needs me. There’s no chaos in my clean and organized home. We had a few days of beautiful weather before being thrust back into winter’s grip, and during one lazy Sunday afternoon, I sat on my front porch swing reading harry potter for as long as I wanted, with nothing but the noise of birds and occasional laughter from the neighborhood kids. It was bliss, and with warm weather approaching, I get to enjoy many more of those days to come. Even right now as I write this post, I’m sitting alone at my dining room table, the house to myself, with nothing but the noise of my fingers as they hit the keyboard. Not another peep, except for the distant sound of the neighbor kids enjoying the warmer weather.
And it’s not just the noise level. It’s a quiet stillness that calms my heart and soul. Nowhere to be, no one running about the house crying or yelling or needing me to come. One day yes, and it’ll be a different kind of wonderful, but not yet. I get to keep the stillness for now.
You know when I really enjoy the stillness and absolute silence? I’ve just washed my face, removed my contacts, brushed my teeth, got in my pjs. I set my alarm, plug in my phone, and turn off the light. Then I climb into bed, but I’m sitting up, just staring into the darkness. It’s quiet. Real quiet. Still. I’m not dressed up, no makeup on, with all the things that make me ready to face another day removed. It’s just me as I am. Another day has closed, and I have my room all to myself. That’s my favorite time to pray. I’ll whisper to the Lord into the silence, and it feels like I’m sharing secrets with Him. I know that silent prayer is always secret between me and the Lord, but this is different. It’s in those still moments I whisper my most hidden desires and confess any sin that is weighing on me. It’s just honest and real, no lack of authenticity. It’s where I feel the most bold and yet most vulnerable with the Lord, and when it feels like He and I are the only people that exist in the world. My best friend and most trusted advisor.
If I’m being honest, that doesn’t happen every night. I, like so many other Christians, do not always have the most faithful prayer life. But there are many days when I feel like I want to talk to Him, and I wait until the day draws to a close so I can meet Him in that place, as if it’s a secret rendezvous for us to meet later that night. It’s just a very special time to me. One day when I’m married, I’ll share a room and a bed, and will maybe have some babies or kids crying and I’ll need to go to them, and I won’t have that special moment and I’ll have to find another. Marriage and children are wonderful things I can’t wait to experience, but it’s these seemingly small things that I’m realizing will have to change. I’ll just have to be more creative in finding time to be quiet and still, particularly when finding time to spend with the Lord.
Yes, staying busy has been a lot of fun. but when I’m mostly busy, I value the times I can come home, not speak, and just enjoy a quiet existence. Too much peace and quiet, and I get antsy to get out and do something. But the right balance allows me to appreciate the amount of time I can allot to silencing the world around me and getting lost in a book or movie. Or even coming home, opening my windows, laying on the couch and drifting off to the sound of the birds chirping outside (this was me yesterday after work). I slept longer than I intended because of how peaceful it was. And when it gets warmer, heading out to Ivy Lake with my journal or a book, or floating out into the middle of the lake to let the sun warm me to my very core. Peace. Quiet. Stillness.
I’m so thankful. I’m thankful for the beauty of the world around me, and how much being alone in nature calms me. When I have no reason to speak and I can just observe and enjoy God’s creation. I tell a lot of people that I see God mostly in creation. So much knowledge and wonder to behold if we have the resolve to stop and look.
I know that a quiet life will be harder to maintain when the pages turn on the next chapters of life. Not impossible, but likely more challenging. But this is my current chapter, and I have to say, it’s pretty great, too. Quiet stillness. Remember to appreciate it while we have it, my single friends.