From the Editor
Life has a way of teaching lessons when you least expect it. I would like to share one such instance that happened to me a couple of weeks ago. I was running late, which, unfortunately, is not a rare occurrence. My mind was overflowing with plans for the day’s events. I was busy trying to figure out how to organize my day’s agenda in a timely and efficient manner. My morning was “free” to get caught up on my to-do list from the day before and prepare for the busy afternoon ahead of me. To be honest, I was not looking forward to my over-scheduled day. I was so focused on what was happening next that I didn’t take time for the “now”. Looking back I realize that I was creating my own sense of urgency to get to work and get the day started... after all, I did not have fire, flood or blood waiting for me at the office. I did have a long to-do list.
I was driving down Columbia Falls Stage intent on getting to work and starting my day. What happened next was truly magical. I topped a hill and was stopped in my tracks by a breathtaking sight. The morning was bitterly cold—the kind of morning that you can see your breath. The sun was shining on the fresh fallen snow causing the effect of tiny diamonds shining in the open fields. This particular field had the irrigation wheels lined up. The wheels were covered with frost and sparkled in the beautiful sunshine. I was just starting to appreciate my surroundings when a sudden movement caught my attention. In the field there were between 50 and 70 elk. Some were bedded down and some were standing. They were soaking up the winter sun and it appeared they were not only appreciative of the beautiful day, but also their surroundings.
In a split second decision, I decided to take 15 minutes to live in the “now”. I sat on the side of the road and soaked up the sunshine and the beauty. The elk were oblivious to my presence. I watched them dig for leftover wheat beneath the snow. The twinkling of the frost immediately brought a touch of magic to my day. The sight of their breath in the cold air made me breathe a relaxed sigh of my own. I could feel the stress leaving my body and being replaced with hope and faith that I could handle my busy day.
When looking at these beautiful animals against the backdrop of snowcapped mountains, one word came to mind… majestic. I have heard the word used many times, but never really experienced the true meaning of it. Wow!
The first thought that came to mind was... Thank you, Lord. Thank you for helping me realize the importance of living in the present. Thank you for the gentle reminder that not all things are measured by checks on a to-do list. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to take a deep breath and relax. Thank you for recharging my soul. Thank you for always knowing what I need.
That image has followed me around for weeks. Any time I feel overwhelmed, I find a quiet spot, close my eyes, take a deep breath and revisit “my” elk. I need it. My soul needs it.
May this Valentine’s Day give you plenty of opportunities to show the special people in your life how much you love them. May you also be presented with numerous opportunities to live in the “now”. Don’t let life pass you by… take an active part in it.