I realized the other day that I had an acorn in the pocket of my jean jacket. Not just any acorn but an acorn from one of the white swamp oak trees on the National September 11 Memorial. I had placed the acorn in my pocket last fall and forgotten about it. I remember hearing or reading somewhere “think about it which is more of a miracle: an acorn taking years to become a mighty tree or if the acorn instantly became a mighty tree.” I think both are miraculous. We live in a time when instantly seems to be the amount of time it should take to do anything. Don’t get me wrong. I am grateful for the advances in food preparation, communications, and even something as basic as ready-made clothing but I also wonder if we have lost something along the way.
I personally thing what we have lost is being in the moment. We have lost the journey. When I would direct camp, I would tell my counselors that they needed to follow the schedule but they also needed to “seize the moments”. Walking from point a to point b wasn’t just about getting to the destination on time. It was also about the journey, the moments. Year ago, I saw a sign outside of a church that read “Jesus never rushed!”
I also think we have lost the wonder. Think about it a tiny acorn can become a mighty oak tree – wow!! Do we still have “wow” moments? It is “wow” moment when all that preparation on Thanksgiving produces a delicious meal shared by family and friends. It is a “wow” moment when your good friend hands you a hand-made knitted pumpkin for no other reason than she is sharing her talents and love with you. Those “wow” moments took time and intention. I read that when the cathedrals of England were being built people knew they would never see the completion in their lifetime but they still donated their talents and money. They were in for the journey even though they wouldn’t be there for the completion. There are many opportunities in our present world that need us to be there for the journey. When I started leading tours for the Tribute Center there was only an empty hole where the WTC had been. There wasn’t even the Tribute Center. But now there is there a busy construction site, a Tribute Center and a National September 11 Memorial with trees. Someday there will be a museum but for now I will keep leading tours and every time I stick my hand in my pocket I will think “wow”.
On a totally random note: I have decided that squirrels need to have better friends. I really think their friends dare them to run across the street, to play “chicken” with cars. Seriously, what else would explain the weaving and dodging they do – either look both ways and cross the street or wait until I have driven by 🙂