One humid Sunday afternoon, my family was visiting the quaintest little local town. Inside an old home turned into a trendy store, my mom, sister, and I gently stepped off creaking wooden floorboards onto an equally creaky front porch, where we spotted my dad rocking back and forth in a rocking chair. After telling him it was time to move on to the next thing, we began our stroll down an antiquated brick sidewalk that guided us further down Main Street. It became quickly apparent that my dad had thoughts that were brewing, and it didn’t take long for him to share them…
“That’s what porches were made for. They don’t make ’em on houses anymore. It’s a shame.”
He was right. Immediately, I was overcome with the sense that this is not only true of the way we build the structure of our houses, but the way we have structured our society and ultimately our lives. I don’t think most of us could sit still long enough to set an even pace in a rocking chair. And if we could, we would be rocking with anxiety over all we have left on our to-do list.
My dad grew up in a world that spun around in simpler times. He also grew up in a world of southern wrap-around porches with worn-in rocking chairs where he spent hours of his childhood in the same familiar humidity, snapping string beans with his grandma.
I long for a life made up of rocking chair moments – not hastily moving from place to place without breathing in everything around me. Just rocking right where I am, taking it all in. Letting it be enough.
This moment with my dad reminds me of Matthew 6:34, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
Don’t get so caught up planning for tomorrow, moving on to the next phase of life, or worrying about what may happen. Be still and present where you are, because you will never get this moment back. And you may look back one day and realize that you missed a lot of life because you moved so quickly – you didn’t show up to take a moment for all it had to offer, soak in every bit of it, and just rock a while.