Monday, January 31, 2005

Fog on Monday Fire Later

Every Monday morning we have a staff meeting. It is routine. It is necessary. It is not always exciting to deal with business, but our staff has fun.

The only way I can begin a staff meeting is listening to the ancient words of The Book. Today I read from Exodus 24:12-18. Yahweh comes to Moses with this request "come up to me on the mountain and wait there."

Come and wait. An invitation from Yahweh. An invitation of delight and terror. Moses takes his assistant, but finally gets to the top of the mountain alone. The cloud or a fog of Yahweh covers the mountain.

Moses sits and waits. He waits some more. He waits for six days in the cloud. Six days alone in a cloud waiting for Yahweh. What went through his mind? How many times did he check his sundial? How many thoughts filled his consciousness?

He waited until he saw the devouring fire of Yahweh. He stayed with Yahweh 40 days.

How long can you sit and wait for Yahweh? Six days. Six hours. Six minutes. Sixty-seconds.

Yahweh calls, but we do not hear and we certainly do not have time to wait.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005


Busy is a word. Business is a word. I feel busyness should be a word. I experience busyness. Its weight is as real as the wind or the sunshine or the rain.

Busy is a word that designates being occupied with activity like a CEO. Busy is when you are engaged in much work or cluttered with distracting detail like a garage filled with spare parts. It even refers to annoying meddlesome activity of the prying eyes of a detective.

Business is a word that legitimizes our work. It is a place of occupation, activity and detail. Business is where a CEO, a mechanic and a detective get paid for their activity.

Busyness is real. Busyness muscles into our day and occupies it. Busyness showers papers and emails and reports and parts into our lives and demands our attention. Busyness blows out commands as if its possesses authority to do so.

Busyness is not a relationship. A calm, casual cup of coffee with your friend is not busyness. A pickup game of basketball and a friendly phone call to say "hello" do not qualify as busyness. Time spent cooking dinner with a friend in a quiet apartment surrounded by conversation is not the busyness of "grabbing lunch" and talking through music.

Who controls you? What commands you? Busyness is as real as any idol can be . . . Imaginary, but oh so powerful.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005


Breaking the silence seems impossible on a website . . . nothing is spoken. However, I have hesitated to break this silence. What can be said after meaningful silence in a conversation, a relationship or after secret words are shared? Words are inadequate and powerful expressions.

I also do not like breaking New Year's resolutions . . . So I have not officially made too many.
Breaking promises . . . I hope not.
Breaking the spine of books, the heart of a child, the spirit of a friend, the hard work of a co-worker . . . May God open my eyes to know when to speak and when to be silent.

Silence may best be broken with encouragement and praise. Maybe we all need to break some silent separations from those dearest and most endeared to us.