If you’re anything like me you are hardly believing that it is November. “Where did the Summer go?” I found myself asking about a week ago. We’ve celebrated All Saints Day and Sunday already and soon toward the end of the month we will celebrate Thanksgiving and Christ the King Sunday, which marks for liturgical Christians the end of the church year.
Time has flown by! It seems to get faster and faster as I get older – both of my parents told me it would, and in true kid fashion, I thought “Yeah, right!” Well, yeah is right! There are lots of things flying by in our lives and our world, and I would invite you to pause for a minute or two. Actually, I’m going to suggest ten whole minutes, and when I say pause, I mean be still. From scripture, “Be still and know that I am God.”
God is continually with us and we almost always seem to lose track of that as the world goes by us at some frenetic pace. Slowing down, breathing, and being present to yourself and to God is countercultural these days. But I want to suggest you do that. Take about ten minutes to just sit and be silent with God. Yes, your thoughts will wander. Yes, the to-do list will still be on your mind. Yes, maybe it won’t be so quiet either. But set a timer. You’ll be surprised at how quickly 10 minutes can go by.
Light a candle if it helps. Think about a breath prayer that can center you. “I am a child of God, I lack for nothing.” Or even a pleading, “Jesus, help me!” is just fine too. But see if you can do it, challenge yourself to do it. If you tell me about your experience, I’ll even buy you some coffee, tea, or another drink of your choice (you might have to drive though) and we can talk about what we noticed together.
I want to close and offer you this November Blessing from my friend, colleague, and mom Kimberly Knowle-Zeller:
“As the leaves fall
and the air turns crisp
as the ground prepares for rest
and the light grows less
November reminds us —
we are not alone.
Today, on All Saints
we recognize the saints among us
feasting at our tables
dancing in our aisles
singing to the heavens
we are not alone.
On All Saints
we remember those who have died
whose spirits and souls comfort us
give us a moment to pause, and reflect
grant us moments to feel your presence
to open ourselves to the connections
between this world and the next.
May we remember to be saints
help us seek your light in all that we do
and in all that we say
offering your grace and hope
to those stumbling for healing and grace
to the neighbor in need of a listening ear
to the friend seeking forgiveness
and a world in need of peace
give us a moment to breathe and reflect
to open ourselves to the wideness of your mercy.
Be with us Lord
now and forever
this month and the next
day after day
walking and guiding us
loving and calling us
showing us the way.