I was sitting on the pier at sunset, while my husband was casting a line.  We were still in Jacksonville, awaiting the funeral for my father in law.  Wyndham had many memories of times shared with his dad as they fished on that pier.

As one who doesn’t like to smell, touch or catch fish (I do like to eat it) I sat on the pier, planning to have some worship time through music.  Overhead, the clouds carried vibrant shades of pink, orange, red and blue.  I’m sure it was beautiful…as I did take a picture.  However,  I had a problem.  As I pulled my ipod out and turned to my “quiet time playlist” I realized that my earphones were completely tangled.  I don’t know how they got contorted into such an intricate knot, but they did.

I felt frustrated, and began my valiant effort to detangle the earphones.  It took a while.  Several moments after I finished, Wyndham had pulled his line in and was ready to go back to the shore.  The setting was beautiful, and the song shuffling through at the time (which I only heard half of) was “When Peace Like a River…” .  How ironic.  I almost completely missed the moment because I’d been so busy detangling my gadget.  Around me the waves were crashing, the sunset was brilliant…shouting out God’s glory– and I was distracted while trying to get my act together in order to enjoy a peaceful time.  I thought of two scriptures that seemed very applicable.  The first was John 5:39

    You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me,

I don’t want to ever miss my fellowship with God, even amidst spiritual activity.

The second was Matthew 13:13-17

    This is why I speak to them in parables:

   “Though seeing, they do not see;

        though hearing, they do not hear or understand.

[14] In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah:

    ” ‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding;

        you will be ever seeing but never perceiving.

    [15] For this people’s heart has become calloused;

        they hardly hear with their ears,

        and they have closed their eyes.

    Otherwise they might see with their eyes,

        hear with their ears,

        understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.’

[16] But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear.

[17] For I tell you the truth, many prophets and righteous men longed to see what you

see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.

Lord, please don’t let me get tangled in my focus, so that I miss the things you want me to see, hear and act upon.

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About Jeanie Shaw

After retiring from forty-five years in full-time ministry, Jeanie Shaw went back to school to earn her master’s and doctorate in spiritual formation and discipleship. She also serves as a certified Christian life coach who loves helping people discover the joy, peace, and purpose that come from finding and following God’s plan for their lives. She has taught classes and workshops all over the world and has written numerous books. She has four grown children, eight grandchildren, and a golden retriever who thinks he is human. When she is not reading, writing, coaching, teaching, or enjoying her family she might be found walking along rivers, learning new lessons about life.

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