August 9, 2015
The strawberries at the strawberry farm near my home where I grew up gave me numerous times a simple yet magical experience. I would take my bike for a 20 minute ride through the forest and the fields surrounding the centuries old farm house. I knew that the wheat fields would ignite my pollen allergy, making my eyes well up, I could hardly see where I was going. And the bumpy road through the forest part made the strawberries almost jump out of their baskets on the way back. Nevertheless, tasting strawberry while riding my bike into the gentle breeze breathing through the pastoral scenery made the trip so worth it. The beauty of the trees and the fields and the juicy savoring experience of these super rich bio strawberries made me transition into a different rhythm, a different mood, into different priorities. My strawberry ride made me change gear, into a sense of calm, of gratitude, and joy.
This art of transitioning is more important than we often give it credit. It is true that some people don’t have such a need to leave the busy buzz because they gain energy from steamy action centers of work and crowd environments. But at some point, we all need to take a moment to step back, gain perspective, catch our breath. Many times the best way to transition into a calming and reflective mood is to get “new ground” under our feet. It doesn’t have to be Aruba, Disney Land or the Catskills (not that there is anything wrong with those places). Sometimes a visit to the nearby strawberry farm or orchard can help. New ground or time to savor certain tastes, they can be conduits to moments of graceful peace flowing, giving our hearts space to sense gratitude and joy. I pray that during these summer weeks we all may have such moments of Gods refreshing grace.