Enter the Stillness

cook stove

I sat in the kitchen in the early morning and entered the stillness that comes with this place, this little cabin in the mountains. The stillness is not silent — the river roars below me, the hummingbirds buzz outside the window. I hear the chips and squeaks of the chipmunks and ground squirrels looking for breakfast.

I thought about the episode of “On Being” I listened to yesterday. Krista Tippett interviewed Pico Iyer about “The Art of Stillness.” Iyer talked about his need to find stillness after a lifetime of travel and movement. I long for that stillness, that “not doing” … and this is one of the places that I find it.

I remember that on our family vacations here, Dad would get up before anyone else and get a fire started in the cook stove. (We didn’t have another stove to cook on and the stove also heated the water.) By the time others got up, the kitchen was open for business. We ran from our cozy beds through the freezing cabin to the warmth of the kitchen and a breakfast of pancakes or hash browns and eggs.

This morning as I sat in the same chair Dad would have sat in. It struck me that he must have longed for and found the stillness of those early mornings here in the kitchen, just as I do today. A tiny, sacred sabbath space before the day begins.

Quiet my anxious mind
And open my heart.
Let me find the quiet place
And meet you there.
Amen.

3 thoughts on “Enter the Stillness”

  1. Nice looking stove. I find it interesting how our families leave us with different gifts… There was no cabin to retreat to in my family or it’s predecessor families, though some of their homes were smaller than what often passes as a cabin today. Instead my folks left me with a love of cars and being on the road… American roads… and American history. And a sense that my worth lay in being productive (as opposed to my father who in mid-life told his wife and father that he no longer wanted to be responsible for his family)… Quiet has been easy for me but still has been harder and as part of my quest to mature into being rather than more doing… I’m trying to learn…

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