Some days it’s difficult to write.

Some days bleakness mutes joy.

Some days sunshine seems dim.

No reason.

The cacophony of events seems to be getting on my nerves this week. Between following (or not) the Olympics, keeping up with ‘Where’s Waldo/Assad?’ and hearing the controversy over a fast food chain, it’s been a week of media whiplash. Highs and lows and cyclones in between. In Seattle it’s also Seafair weekend which brings its own show of bravado and high flying fighting machines. The world is just, plain, noisy.

Now, according to Christian literature, this is the point where we are especially to turn to God for refuge and shelter. That’s true, yes. God is our refuge and strength. (Unless noise is not bothersome, in which case I’m a bit jealous.) I would also like to point out that it is precisely at this point where we come up against our own humanity, which can be a hinderance to getting to shelter. At least, I come up against my humanity: finding all sorts of barriers and roadblocks that keep me where I am in this moment of unease and discord.

Perhaps this will sound familiar (or maybe it’s just me):
It’s noisy…I should find someplace else to read/write. I don’t have time to go anyplace before x…but I could leave early and find a spot. Where? …time spent trying to make a decision cuts into writing/reading. Screw it, I’ll just stay here. …but, it’s noisy.

Sometimes we can break out of ourselves, sometimes we need God to break into our thoughts, our cycles, our crazy-go-rounds. Spiritual disciplines and practices do help…when we practice them. At the very least, we can practice gratitude. I have come to believe that that is the single most important spiritual discipline at all, ever. It may sound like a mixed emotion–it’s a noisy day, But… it’s sunny. Another way of describing this spiritual discipline: the practice of But… When I hear myself starting a string of sentences with complaints, it’s time for But… then finding something to be grateful for.