Another Look

“That’s the problem. When you say you’re looking, you’re just looking.” – Naomi Paul, 11

The seasons have changed, at least on the calendar, from the heat of summer to the relative cool of fall. I speak of course of the traditional understanding of autumn- there is no such dependable moderation of the temperature here in Miami. In fact, the days are hotter than they’ve ever been. The season has also changed for me and my family, and while the effects have been similarly unpredictable, I’m confident in stating that we wouldn’t turn the calendar back even if we could.

In all, I must say we’ve enjoyed a favorable time. We’ve had two cars break down, bought another we really, really needed, and managed to get our kids started on another family learning year. Our marriage has endured the stress of my job change and our season of transition in general. Musically I’ve been able to reintroduce myself to the jazz scene, and my teaching studio has grown by several students. Of course, finances remain an obstacle, and we have more big decisions to make. My challenge is to maintain the proper perspective.

My daughter’s quote above was in response to her older brother’s search for something in the kitchen which, of course, was right in front of him. I found her statement at once obvious and profound. So many time we are looking for something in life, but that is all we are doing – using our sight, and not our insight. We’re just looking, thinking what we need will just appear, instead of realizing what we need is often right in front of us. By not letting distractions lead us to simply looking at the surroundings, we can see what is possible rather than just what is visible.

Our distractions of financial hardship, of upcoming educational and career options, of trying to see what lies ahead…searching for answers by constantly reviewing the issues is simply looking to look – like window shopping for worries. We know those obstacles are there, and using valuable time to simply glance and gloss over the problems do us no good. Rather, we are trying to see what we already have – a heavenly purpose, a foundation of faith, a loving home – not necessarily just a place to live, but a connection of loved ones, in one place, a fabric interwoven with the threads of memory, laughter and life – and our understanding that what is within us is greater than anything outside of us. We don’t have to see what’s ahead of us. We have to activate what – or more accurately, Who – is within us. Then and only then we can know we’re moving in the right direction, and we’ll find what we’re seeking.



One thought on “Another Look

  1. It always pleases me to see people who really look and appreciate what they have. Back when I was nursing our second son a man came over and brought me a cooler to use as a footstool and then stayed to visit (since most folks won’t make eye contact with a nursing mother). He asked if I work outside the home or if I was a stay at home mom. I replied that I stayed home because it was important but of course, we were poor. He told me that I was not poor. I was rich in everything that mattered. And he was right. Today I look back over my marriage and the relationship I have with my husband and children and I have no regrets. God is good to us.

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