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Beauty in Distractions

We had a fairly raucous thunderstorm roll through last night, which battered a lot of leaves and sticks down onto my walking path this morning.

Having debris in my way changed my focus.

I had to adjust my steps several times as I noticed things differently around me.

big green leaf with brown edges

This huge leaf had fallen onto the curb and still glistened from the morning rain. I paused briefly to take in its individual beauty. My breath deepened in this moment of stillness.

I released it slowly and moved on.

As I approached a bus stop, I saw three boys running and jumping. When I got closer I realized they were playing long jump with some large sticks that had fallen into the street.

Rather than sitting on the wet curb and scrolling on their phones as usual, their focus had shifted to the differences in their environment too. They were playfully challenging one another to run faster and jump harder, moving the sticks apart a little more with each round...engaging competitively as boys tend to do.

gravel pile with construction zone cones

I detoured around piles of gravel for a construction project, thinking about how my young boys used to love watching ANY construction vehicle in motion. This reminded me to pray for them and particular barriers they may be facing today.

At another bus stop I waved to two neighbor friends clad in long tights and cradling their coffee cups, lingering in the cooler air long after their kiddos had climbed onto the schoolbus. I reflected on similar moments I've shared with other busy mommas, savoring a few morsels of adult conversation in-between all the child interactions.

Just as we have seasonal shifts in our weather, we also have seasonal phases in our parenting. Our focus changes based on the needs of the family. Sometimes we're very detail-oriented and other times it's looking at the broad strokes, wondering if we're covering the basics of raising decent humans.

cloudy sky

As I rounded the corner toward home, my gaze lifted toward the sky and its dramatic clouds on display. The hint of last night's storm was fading as the bright sun peeked through with rays of a bright day ahead.

I said a prayer of gratitude for this perspective shift during my daily routine, thanking God for the micro changes He provides in our hearts as we see things differently around us.

I thought about our lesson on Martha in yesterday's Bible study and how she, too, was distracted in her everyday household and meal preparations.

Bible study notes on Martha in "Women of the Bible" journal
Bible study notes on Martha

Jesus helped re-center Martha's focus, and He can do the same for us whatever distractions we may face in our chaotic "ordinary" days.

"Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for Him" Psalm 37:7
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