Friday, May 23, 2008

The Pace of a Hen

Tonight we're heading back through the holiday traffic (sigh) to our old neck of the woods for a special occasion with some friends. Three of our kids are coming along for sleepovers with their friends. Papa Rooster will head back home tonight; I'm spending the night at the old house and tomorrow will hopefully finish the final cleaning of it. The kids and I will rendez-vous at the Oliver event, a recognition celebration called the Strike Party, on Saturday night--and then we'll drive our minivan back. (Poor Vinnie the minivan has been patiently waiting at the old house for us. I'll be so glad to have him back. Minnie the maxivan is such a gas guzzler!)

Then it's early to rise for Sunday School and church!

Sounds pretty breathless and nothing like the pace of a hen, I know. But I long to return to a slower pace--can't wait to get settled in here and start finding time to breathe again.

So while I'm gone and settling in, I'm going to republish a few posts from the earliest days of this blog. Here's the first in this little series.

From the archives:

Several years ago a friend mentioned to me the quote from Teresa of Avila that is in my sidebar and also the book that brought the quote to her attention, Josephine Moffett Benton's The Pace of a Hen (1961). The insights of this older, wiser Quaker woman have been such an encouragement to me in my attitude toward labor as a wife and mother. Here's an example of her perspective:

A woman...must walk a precarious way between her family, her work, her desire to be of service in the community, and her need for recreation and worship.

Her scattered life looks as if she were going around in circles. And why not? What other way is there to go, ultimately? The longest trip that we can set out to go around the world. And in time, we go around the year--spring, summer, autumn, winter. Within that larger cycle of time is the daily one--early morning, high noon, sundown, night. Each new day can bring redemption for us, even as each springtime brings renewal for tree and flower and grass.

Old earth is a sphere that travels around the sun, as the moon in its orbit travels around our earth. The very course of blood through our veins and arteries is known as the circulatory system. The emblem of divinity is a halo. Why disparage going around in circles? Any other route suggests imbalance, a jumping-off place, abyss. Perhaps the hen's pace is a wholesome one in rhythm with the universe.

1 comment:

stephseef said...

you will NOT be sorry that you have left that traffic behind!!!