Do you remember watching the Jetson’s as a kid? All of those super efficient and speedy gadgets that kept George and the whole family hopping from one thing to the next seemingly with little to no effort yet also with little to no down time. No extended meal times to visit. No cooperating to start or complete a task. Independent efficiency that enabled you to fly through the day multi-tasking.
You realize of course that we have most of that stuff now. Phones that don’t have a cord attached to the wall, that are not just mobile but have screens so we can visually see the person we are chatting with. Ovens that work in a microwave minute! Cars that can park for you. Satellite programming and mapping built in to the cars. Computerized units that we can speak to within our home and will turn on or shut off appliances, record television programing, even play your favorite song. And those same products can be bossed around by us through those phones.
While, our hands are free our minds are full and running. People have never been so enably-equipped or… tired.
You know it’s not just at Christmas that the stores are packed and the highways, including the internet-highways, are full of people intent on checking things off of their to-do list / schedule. It has become the American lifestyle. No reason to wander or time to be stilled in wonder.
Quite frankly I am not sure who I would be if I hadn’t grown up disappearing into the woods and hills when the world kept trying to fling me into fast forward. You see the wandering is what settled my heart, stilled the chaos within, birthed a song in my soul and strengthened my faith. It released the bars of a busy world, filled too often with conflict and discord and flung open my mind flooding it with melodies and dreams and… peace.
I enjoyed it as a youth.
Needed it as I grew up and older.
And after the effects of a brain trauma left me with PTSD type cognitive issues I find it is necessary for me to function.
Yet regardless of age or health everybody needs to wander, most just do not know it.
It doesn’t need to consume a day and be inked in on your calendar – thereby becoming an unbreakable mental commitment which totally steals the essence of wandering.
It doesn’t have to be an hour although people schedule three to five hours of workouts weekly at the gym in order that they get or stay physically fit.
Wondering doesn’t confine or lock you into a mindset. Wandering frees the soul and allows the heart to hear the still, small Voice and refreshes the hope within. It releases the mind to embrace the wonder of what we so often pass and fail to see: a bird in the air, the wind dancing with the trees, the clouds lazy roll as they ease forward… that life is more than do-able, it is beautiful.
Maybe you don’t have woods to wander in. I don’t. But I go home or to a park. And on the days I need more time or when the weather is uncooperative I take off driving the back roads… wandering. Without music, without friends or family, with my ringer turned off simply so all I can hear is God speaking into the silence and revealing the beauty in and around me.
Maybe today is too full and the season is stacked and you don’t have a minute or a window to wander off in or through but should you find yourself undone in the midst of all the merry… slip off and take some time to wander and stay until the ‘wonder’ has returned.
I am held in awe and wonder
When I release my feet to wander
On the hills and along the way
With the Maker of my soul and this day.
Photos from my wandering last week when I turned a 3 hour drive into a seven hour back-road wander. (And NO I wasn’t lost – just blessed by an incredible journey with the Lover of my soul.)