Be still, and know that I am God.
Psalm 46:10 is one of my favorite lines in the Bible, probably because I am so rarely still in the true sense of the word. I'm a hyper-multitasker, always working on two or three projects at once, always on the move. When I am watching TV, I write out thank-you notes or organize photo albums. When I'm making the kids lunches for school, I'm also stirring a pot of noodles for dinner or wiping grit out of the refrigerator or making a grocery list. The advantage of this Olympic-caliber multitasking is that I'm super efficient -- I get an awful lot done every day. The disadvantage is that I am never still, never truly in the moment. I never soak in the details and nuances of my life and surroundings.
That's why I try to spend a couple of hours at Holmes Lake Park every week, usually on Sunday afternoon. Holmes Lake is man made (of course, this is Nebraska after all), so it hardly "counts" as a body of water, but it's beautiful and tranquil nonetheless. I usually head towards "my spot" -- a sloping hill of crabgrass tucked beneath a walnut tree -- where I can watch the glinting water and hear the crunch of gravel as joggers pass by on the path behind me.
I don't usually pray, in the typical sense, when I'm at Holmes Lake. I'm not much of a pray-er, to be quite honest. But I do appreciate. I notice; I linger. And in doing so I think in some ways I am praying, albeit in a non-traditional manner. I am noticing God's creation -- the two yellow-breasted finches nudging each other on the branch above my head, unaware of my presence below; the red-winged blackbird's vibrating trill; even the taupe grasshopper, slightly menacing, that springs onto my bare foot.
I breath deeply at Holmes Lake. I am still. And in my own way, I know God.