I’ll explain. I woke up to an “Oh my gosh” kind of day. If you live in the Adirondacks you know what I mean, the sky is brilliantly blue, the lake is flawlessly smooth, and everything is amazingly green. I decided today would be a perfect day to take as my Sabbath Day, on the lake with my kayak. I need to add that recently I had asked God to show me new revelations, I hadn’t been specific in my prayer, I would leave that up to One who knows so much more than I do. It wasn’t long before I realized my first lesson among the dragonflies and the lily pads.
Once on the lake, I found a perfect spot to just lean back and enjoy the peace and quiet. With all of the 4th of July tourists gone, it was a little bit ‘o heaven, just me and the lake. After about an hour a man in a small sailboat seemed to come out of nowhere. Pulling up to the side of me, he offered me a cold beverage and asked if I minded him encroaching on my peninsula (his words not mine). I graciously declined the cold beverage. Had he been able to see the invisible dialogue bubble above my head he would have read my real thoughts on our sharing space, which went something like this, “NO!” This is my Sabbath space, I don’t want to engage, or share names or conversation.” Nothing personal against him or anyone, I love people, I also love pizza but not all the time and my inner introvert craves places without voices or conversation from time to time.
Anyway, what happened next was my lesson. After declining the cold beverage I told him that it was fine for him to anchor his sailboat on my peninsula, besides I was leaving soon and with that, I asked him for the time. My serious attempt at Sabbath had me leaving all gadgets, watches, phones in my car and I had no clue what time it was. His answer was a spot on, Sabbath Day response, he said, “It’s JUST Afternoon.” That’s all he said. Not knowing if I heard him correctly I said, “Excuse me, what time is is?” He repeated what he had said before with more detail, “It’s just afternoon and that is all I care about.” Then he popped open a cold one, leaned back in his boat, covered his eyes with his hat and went on with the same purpose I had intended for the day……..NOTHING!
I had asked him what time it was out of habit, I didn’t really need to know what time it was but I am so oriented to tasks, time, and schedules that my question simply fell from my mouth out of habit. Sure I had a lawn to cut, laundry to do, and whatever else goes along with running a house but today was my Sabbath and it was afternoon, that’s all I needed to know.
So I thanked God for this stranger’s lesson of how we let the issue of time impose on our need for Sabbath and I leaned back in my kayak, watched the fish swim around the reeds, herons land on old dead trees, and the dragonfly dance from one lily pad to another. I didn’t meditate on them, I didn’t contemplate their existence, instead, I learned to just BE in that moment for however long I was there.