Two weeks ago I had a wonderful experience, for I returned to the beautiful northern California of Jack’s and my early married years. Though I stayed in San Francisco, I spent most of each day at a conference in Berkeley, land of creative architecture, whimsical gardens, affordable restaurants, and free-spirited people.
The conference had a high-minded focus on ecology and sustainability, which if you have read previous blogs, you know directly relates to my new job at my school as resident beekeeper and gardener. But I try always to have an additional focus, which is how I connect everything I learn with my faith, and then use that insight to connect with others.
There was ample opportunity to find authentic links, for the conference focused on clarity of purpose, building relationships among those who are like-minded and even more among those who are not and, especially, on our place in God’s world, and the transitions in nature from life to death to life again. But something even better happened. The best lesson that I learned during my 5-day sojourn did not take place in the classroom. It was in the garden, in the sunshine, among bales of straw. (See the attached photo, including the stretched out legs of my traveling companion)
We are designed to rest after work. Our bodies require it, but even more, our spirits long for it, and we are called to enjoy it. God rested after six days of creation. Not because he was exhausted and burned out (of course not – He is God!), but because He was setting forth a model for us, and He called it GOOD! At the beginning of the Bible: “…on the seventh day he rested from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy…” and at the end: “… for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his.”
I am writing this early in July, dear readers. It is summer! Take time to rest. Delight in the wonders of the natural world. Smell the scents, taste the treats, find a figurative bale of straw, and above all – listen!