Monday, November 14, 2011

Where oh Where

I rarely sit alone and eat lunch.  Generally, lunch is a bustling table between clementine loving and amiable David, and talkative and inquisitive Naomi.  But on Monday, I had two wonderful helpers with me all day.  Two of my music students, were having a picnic during our indian summer afternoon with the kids on the lawn, and I was having a quiet lunch.  Sitting and eating lunch alone, however rare it is, usually leads me to either set myself up in front of the computer, put my cell phone nearby, or have a magazine, agenda, or book at hand.  But I sat at the head of our dining room table.  Bookcases to my back, and kitchen to my front, windows to my right and a piano to my left.  I never sit here.

The morning of this quiet lunch, I was jolted awake with a looming comment that Mike had casually stated when talking to friends about the job search, "I wish I had more interviews." Somehow this statement nudged me swiftly from a deep sleep to being wide awake around 5am, several minutes before the first alarm.  My do-do now-now-in-a-panic mentality led me to attach google to my hip all morning and search for job openings, mentally suppressing the overwhelming majority of which are advertised in the midwest and south.  I have a picture, several different pictures, of where I think is best for our family to live, what kind of job I think would be best for Mike, etc. I jump into a gerbil wheel and start running towards these ideas all the while disillusioned into thinking I'm getting somewhere.  But my feet are moving, so somehow, preoccupied with this idea, I feel like I'm accomplishing something.  The ability to "google something" brings with it a sense of pride that you have any and all information available at your fingertips. Not particularly true.

I sat, at the head of the table, no cellphone, computer, or magazine.  As the statement is carved into a wooden plaque, it was carving into my heart as I read, "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want."  Psalm 23:1


Not in the way you may have read the statement, but I, miss visual learner, pictured myself as a wooly little sheep grazing on the beautiful field of grass, only knowing grass and sleep and following and grazing, and the sound of my shepherd's voice.  I have no long neck to see over the fence of the pasture, or half a sense to figure out where I'm going next.  How could I possibly scope out the world, the meadows, the fields, and the terrains, map where would be best for me to graze, and then muster up the intelligence to get myself to that location?  It's not happening.  How could I "want" when I don't even know what I am really looking for, because how could I, on all fours with bushy wool covering me, step back from the scenario, assess all objectives, make a plan and execute it.

I already have plenty of responsibilities, as helper to Mike and mother-teacher to Naomi and David, and while accomplishing them in love, can hold confidence that my Shepherd will pick out the best pasture for our family as a unit, and for the four of us as individuals.  Doing and doing will never come close to this wisdom and insight, and if you go to read the rest of Psalm 23,  you will find this is the only way to still waters- to be led, restored, and comforted.

I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep.  John 10:11-15

Google doesn't quite know me this well.  
Let's not get so intimate with these kinds of hired hands.