31 Days of Paying Attention — Day Two


I grabbed my camera and headed out into the cool damp of the morning on that first day of hand-out distribution. I, too, was eager to ‘pay attention,’ and I wanted to do it while moving enough to keep myself warm. The retreat center was located in the middle of a redwood grove, family cabins nestled among their branches, creek beds making a circle around the grounds. I headed to the bridge, overlooking the stream that had only ‘yesterday,’ surged beyond its boundaries, completely destroying the only entrance to the camp. 

That ‘yesterday’ was before the onslaught of our current severe drought, however. And peering over the edge brought no sight of water, no hint of moisture. I was disappointed, having hoped-against-hope that this place might somehow be immune to the devastation that has invaded our beautiful state over the last five years of minimal rain. There were still ferns, way down there at the bottom, so some moisture must remain below the surface.

I wonder — is there enough good, life-giving nourishment buried beneath my layers to sustain me during seasons of drought? Lord, remind me of your Life in me.

And then I strolled over to the other side of the bridge, and this is what met my eyes and my camera:


A puddle, that’s all it was. But it was wet! It shone in the flickering morning sun which was slowly emerging from the mist. The ferns leafed larger and brighter on this side of the bridge, lifting their delicate fronds to the breeze. I breathed a prayer of thanks that the Water of Life never disappears, even when times are difficult and dry. And I wondered — am I willing to look for the puddles, to suss out the small spaces where God is watering my soul?


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  1. If it’s God’s puddle, it is more than enough . . .
    Wonderful reflection, Diana!

  2. Elaine Byer Reed says

    We were hoping to have cooler days in So. CA this past weekend–but not yet. Your puddle was a beautiful reminder to keep waiting and looking. We blame God for problems and he is right there to help us all the time.

  3. Margie Bicknell says

    As I was getting ready for the late service, the sun broke through the clouds and hit an assortment of leaves in my backyard. That ray of sun lit up the space so beautifully, I just stood there and watched as the breeze moved the leaves as if to waving at me.

    All things bright and beautiful

    • Such a lovely example of exactly what I mean with this series — paying attention. Taking even a split second longer than usual to look, really look, at the beauties all around us, all the time. Thanks for sharing that, Margie. If I close my eyes, I can almost see it with you.