melissa hirshburg profile

artist + writer

sharing gentleness, faith and artful inspiration


Keeping Pace

Keeping Pace

May your soul be open both to stillness and God’s movement. When the time is right may you have the courage to move with Him.
— Emily Freeman, The Quiet Collection

There are many things to do. Always, right?

And the sun is bright and blaring in my face. And my heart beats with rhythm. It keeps pace naturally. But I don't. Late afternoon. 45 minutes until golden hour. Gentleness is golden. At my western window art room desk, my dog Maggie sits below me. Hair just shaved for the August heat, looking tidy and neat. But I love when her hair is long. Oliver and Jeff are out riding bikes. 

Exhale and let the sun set.

Exhale and let something settle down.

In a little while the sun will be softer. Reminding me to be kind to myself. The kindness of colors gentle across the clouds. 

There are many things to do always. And maybe it's hard to keep pace or keep up.

I imagine Jeff on his bike, made for speed, slim tires. Oliver on his bike, training wheels. Both with red cheeks. And Jeff lets Oliver keep his own pace and stays by his side though he could speed ahead.

And if Oliver hustles as fast as he can, he couldn't keep up with his Dad.

But his Dad understands, and stays right with him.

I imagine all this sitting at my desk with a treadmill behind me. Jeff drops Oliver off, so he can go for a longer ride. Now, Oliver stands beside me, talking my ear off then racing up and down the hallway. "And mommy now I have 25 five ways to go, but I can't go 25 ways, watch. (He runs down the hallway and back again). See, I can go 25 ways. This is getting so hard." I know this sounds like nonsense, but it kind of resonates with me. We feel we have ALL the things to do. We doubt we can do them. We attempt to try and want recognition. Then we agonize about how hard it all is! He doesn't know at this moment I am writing about the pressure of keeping up and keeping pace, so his words seem serendipitous and sweet. And the Lord feels near, like He is reminding me of how He understands; He holds my hand and renews my strength through His understanding and compassion.

Yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.
— Isaiah 40:31

I do still get tired and I do become weary. I need my sleep at night. And I need pauses too. The beginning of the verse is important; the waiting part of the verse and also the acknowledgement of needing God and needing renewed strength. It is the humility and waiting, and then renewed strength. So here I am, humbled and waiting and receiving a gentleness that strengthens my soul.

 

 

 

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