Journey 231: Beside Still Waters

I am drawn to water. The rhythmic sound of ocean waves, a babbling brook winding through the trees, the stillness in the middle of a lake…all soothe me and energize me. My ideal weekend getaway is a small cozy cottage near a body of water. Any type of water. 


I’m feeling that pull toward water, and that little cottage, and in the very near future, I will arrange a weekend away for soul and body care. In the meantime, I will seize any opportunity that presents itself, as was the case today. While in AR taking care of business after the passing of Greg’s dad, I chose to stay in the car while Greg filled out paperwork and waited inside an office. 

I had an ulterior motive for remaining outside. It was an unusually cool day, overcast with light rain showers passing through the area. I lowered my car window so I could clearly see the little brook nearby, and perhaps hear the gurgle  of water. The sidewalk ran parallel to the brook and houses and businesses were nearby, but the water flowed and didn’t mind, and neither did I. 

I let my phone buzz with messages for a few minutes, while I disconnected and watched the water, allowing it to wash over me spiritually, if not physically. At last I threw open the door and walked down the gentle slope. I had to get closer. Was it a drainage ditch, here in the middle of Siloam Springs, AR? Or was it actually a little brook.? The  clear water ran over a stone bed. In my mind, it was a brook. 

If I had had a folding chair, in my trunk, as I often do, I would have sat there by that little stream while waiting for Greg to return. I smiled thinking about the looks on the faces of people walking out to their cars or driving by, to see someone sitting there in that very public spot. 

A memory suddenly rose, of me as a small child of 5 or 6 years. I grew up in the big city of Tulsa, OK. My spirit longed for woods and rivers. I lived with front yard trees and ditches that collected water during heavy rain. I made do, though. I climbed those trees. And I fished in those ditches and large puddles. Or at least, I pretended to. Using a stick with string tied to it, I camped out at my favorite “fishing hole”, the huge puddle in my neighbors’ front yard down the street. I had a great imagination but I knew what the reality was. I knew there weren’t any fish in there. Pretending to fish gave me an excuse to sit in front of that little body of water and just enjoy staring into it, enjoy a time of peace. 

I laughed today, remembering that child with the wild imagination and even wilder spirit. The love of water has been with me a long time, and runs deep within my soul. Staring at the brook, I decided it was good I didn’t have a chair. Or Greg might have returned to find me sitting contentedly by this “mighty river”, fishing with a stick and string. 

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