When my sister Ann called last night, she could tell that I was in a zone somewhere because she said, “What are you doing? You sound funny.”
“Just thinking,” I replied. She chuckled a little and then asked, “About what?”
I told her that I was thinking about blogs and books and teaching and retirement and children and friends and religion. She’s a smart girl, that Annie, and she quickly turned my (our) focus to religious topics. She said that her pastor had begun a study entitled HABIT, an acronym for five words that the members were to try to incorporate into their lives. The H stands for HANG, as in hanging with God.
To hang with Him really translates to hang out with Him, to find some quiet meditative time each day to better commune with Him. It could be reading and pondering the scriptures or some other inspirational books, or it could be quietly reflecting on the beauties of Mother Nature. Prayer too is a vital part of this hanging out process.
When she had explained the HABIT practice a little more fully, I asked Ann if she remembered that quietude was my word of the year. Not the month, but the entire year of 2010. Yes, she remembered.
“Well,” I said, “This hanging out concept fits right into my word.”
“Are you going to write about it?” she asked.
“Maybe. Probably. In fact, definitely.”
There’s so much to be said for spending a few minutes at the beginning of each day to get ourselves focused and calmed and ready for whatever the day might bring. My husband used to gently kid me about my obsession for solitude and once asked what he was supposed to say if someone needed to talk to me when I was getting my soul together. “Just tell them that,” I said. I think the idea scared him a little, but he’d be the first to attest to the fact that I’m a much, much happier person to live with if I can just have a little HANG time in the morning.
Back to Ann. As she was whizzing down the highway with her beloved Allen on the way home from Hartsville last night, I read her a quote by Sue Bender from “A Lesson in Prayer” that sums up my feelings on the subject. She liked it, and I hope you will too.
After writing that her day begins as early as 4:30 or 5:00 a.m., Ms. Bender continues, “I read one page in each of the small inspirational books. The books change, but they are always ones that remind me that I am not alone, that a spirit larger than myself is at work, a universe larger than my immediate self-interest and concerns. For that I am endlessly grateful.”