Monday, March 24, 2014

The Thinking Chair

When I moved to the farm nearly a quarter of a century ago, there were some long-standing practices that were firmly in place and not subject to change. One of those was The Thinking Chair. As you can see, the thinking chair is an old wagon seat that is mounted on a very rustic frame. It overlooks our small lake and is nestled in the trees. 

The Thinking Chair is in a lovely spot for admiring the scenery, but that's not the best part. The number one rule about the thinking chair is that only one person can be there at a time, except by special invitation.  No exceptions. When someone is in The Thinking Chair, they can do anything they want, but NO ONE can disturb them. No phone calls. No text messages. No emails. No questions. No conversations. It was the rule when I arrived, and it has remained inviolate. It's my very favorite place in the world. 

As a physician, I've spent the last three decades on call and have been attached to one electronic communication device or another all those years. Someone always has access to me. Except in that chair. In that chair, I can set aside the cares of the world and all the words that accompany them. I can be still.  I can be silent. 




How wonderful it is to have a place where the only objective is silence! It's the place where God's Still Small Voice is most audible because the clamor of the world has, for a few moments, been silenced. 

Not everyone is blessed with a rustic retreat, but there is no denying the need for a quiet place. This week, in the midst of the clamor and constant contact that surrounds you, carve out a few minutes to be still, to be silent. 

In that silence, listen. Simply silence yourself and listen. 

Selah. Pause and ponder.