I usually take my dog on a long walk in the morning but I woke up slowly today and wanted to be somewhere at 9 so his walk came later than usual, after the sun had warmed the earth for many hours.
With the temperature at 57 degrees I reveled in the sun soaking into my skin and marveled at a sky bursting with blue, punctuated with benign clouds that held no threat of snow or rain. Spring is still a ways off in Nebraska but the promise was there today. For several miles I just sort of drifted, letting Xavier meander wherever his leash would allow him to go, letting my mind wander in whatever direction my playlist took it.
Then I rounded a corner and ran smack into a wall of wind….and a hill. Suddenly this idyllic walk was a struggle. Honestly, if I’d had extra fabric between my arms and my sides, I’m pretty sure I would have gone airborne. Xavier’s ears were pushed flat back against his head, my watering eyes were soon burned by the wind, and with each step I was physically pushing against an invisible wall. I was pretty sure my Fitbit was giving me double credit for each step I took, it was requiring that much effort.
I’ve been reflective today…perhaps already turning over in my mind this week’s photo challenge. I had been thinking about the many pictures I’ve taken over the years of things being reflected in puddles, lakes and rivers. Today’s walk sort of thumped me on the head and showed me that this time I would interpret the challenge figuratively instead, reflecting on how many times my life is like today’s walk.
Too often I live in my relatively sheltered life without taking the time to be thankful for the calm periods…for the security of my husband’s job, for the health we enjoy, for the family we love so very much. Too often I forget to thank God for all that is right and only call out to Him when I turn a corner and find that the wind is squarely in my face, pushing me back, leaving me no options but face it head on. Prayer during these periods is intense, pleading, and fervent.
Today’s walk reminded me that I need to pray not just when I’m looking for God’s help but also in times of calm, when I’m taking the blessings of life for granted. It needs to be just as fervent and just as often.
It’s supposed to be in the 30’s again this weekend and snow is predicted on Monday but it’s a sure thing that there will be spring flowers soon. In life, even the darkest times contain seeds slumbering below the surface that will bloom and bring joy to our hearts.
Reflections on life,thankfulness, and the promise of spring during an afternoon walk.