The past several days have been a frenzied whirlwind of final preparations for the mission trip – now less than forty-eight hours away. I’ve spent most (but not all – I don’t want to exaggerate, here!) of my waking hours either writing something, copying something, packing something, buying something, talking to someone about something, or making a note to do something . . . about the mission trip. I’ve also been trying to squeeze in sermon preparation in the midst of it all. And I’ve gotten harried doing it.
Then there was the yard to be mowed. After packing seven bags full of books with Russ and Phillip this morning, and then running an errand, doing a little more work on tomorrow’s sermon, and taking Stephen to McDonald’s for lunch and Walmart for errands (for the mission trip!), I mowed the yard. And it helped me. The roar of the mower was louder than the roar in my brain and the sweat did something for my mind that the last three days of study and toil have not. It cleared it. Ideas for tomorrow’s message were clarified. My muscles relaxed. My soul became more subdued. I was helped.
Other things today have helped as well (including someone’s generous offer to watch Stephen for a few hours tonight while Holly and I went to dinner). But the turning point was mowing the yard. Not a particularly “spiritual” activity. But, then again it was. Every time we fulfill our responsibilities while abiding in our calling can and should be an act of worship. I’m not sure how worshipful I actually felt while pushing the mower. But there was some healthy meditation mingled with my grass-cutting. And there is some retro-worship going on, as I thank God for using something physical to refresh me mentally and spiritually. Mowing the yard reminded me of the value of changing the pace, doing something physical, and just doing what needs to be done, even when it seems like a nuisance.