It’s just a small yard with two trees and a couple of bushes. But in the morning, when the light hits it just right and the birds are singing and the cool brace of the air compliments the warmth of the coffee cup in my hand, it is a thing of beauty not easily explained.
A photo cannot reveal the temporary nature of the beauty of the sunlight. I know that my fence rarely looks like this. In a few short moments, the golden glow will disappear as the morning sun rises into the bluish glare of noon. The heat will rise and the wild birds, alive with motion and song and hunger, will hide for a quiet siesta in the trees.
A photo can’t reveal the memories of a small girl with her arms spread wide declaring to the world, “This is the Best. Day. Ever!” But I see it over the rim of my cup. Just like I hear the sizzle of the cold grill that stands beside me. As I can see the first firefly that appeared two nights ago.
It’s not easy to see the feeling that this is the place I belong. It’s my place. Not because I’m paying the bill each month, but because I’m the only one up to see this moment, in this place, and so it seems made just for me. No one else has their coffee on this top step on this small deck and so this moment is mine, alone.
This is my before moment. Before work and necessity cloud my mind. Before the needs of others press in. Before I lose my place and my purpose hides behind the urgent. This is the last moment to pick my course independent of the winds of the day. This step is where I can see clearly how I fit into the grand scheme of things. Where I can remember that God made these trees and that they give me the oxygen I breathe.
This is the peace before the afternoon thunderstorms and the phone calls and the insistent internet distract me. It’s the last place my busy mind will be at rest to wander and absorb with no agenda.
For the rest of the day, this will just be a small square of yard instead of a peaceful sanctuary. But for the rest of the day, I will remember that it is here, waiting, and that my step knows my name, as does my Creator.