Itty Infinity

The other day, I went for my daily walk along Lake Pontchartrain, and it was our first crisp and cool day here in SE Louisiana since probably late April.

A cold front had finally overthrown the summer-long tyranny of stifling Gulf air, bringing welcome relief from the North.

It was late Sunday afternoon and the cool drying wind was gusting 15-25 mph from the northwest, picking up during its lengthy fetch across the twenty-four mile stretch of 80 degree water enough moisture to paint the skies with speckles of thin, fast-moving grey stratus. The waves had kicked up to about 2-3′ and were splashing playfully against the artificial rock barrier put up after Katrina. I decided to ditch my bike and walk down to the rocks to drink in this marvelous scene.

I placed all of my normal cares and worries behind me and allowed the present moment, for a moment, to just be. You know what I mean, when you can actually feel your shoulder muscles finally relax.

The wind carried faint hints of pine, and I thought, “Maybe that scent has drifted to my nose intact all the way from the lush Longleaf Pine Forest about 200 miles to our northwest.”

What a thrill!

The mud-drenched waves rushed into the spaces between the rocks and shot out like tiny geysers, soaking me through with that warm water and leaving me speckled with bog peat.

Several men about few hundred feet to the east of me were throwing their cast nets into the lake, laughing as the nets were caught in the stronger gusts of wind and thrown back over their heads.

After about 20 minutes I headed back to my bike to finish my aerobic ride down the levee bike trail, past the huge pump station and on toward the gaudy Treasure Chest Casino, but I was set off course at once by the sight of a small patch of Tiny Bluets. Amazing! Sheltered from the wind and waves along the lee side of the rocks, they barely rustled. Three blooms.

It reminded me of the day when my youngest daughter, then around the age of three, stopped my usual busy rush one day to have me look at a dead stick. After giving the stick a perfunctory glance, hoping that would satisfy her grasp for my attention, I tried to reengage my rush. But she would having nothing of it! “Daddy, look! A stick! A stick!” I paused again to look, and she lured me ever-closer into the shredded, minuscule crevices in which — O Wonder! — were several tiny red mites scampering around. As we fell at once into the grass and gawked at this astonishing sight, I suddenly felt an unsought rush of gratitude that she had allowed me to pause over the useless wonder of such itty inklings of infinity.

O Itty God, thank you for re-awakening in my dormant heart the vision of your great glory that spies upon the cosmic vastness from your throne upon the Tiny Bluet.

But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore… — Luke 12:4

8 comments on “Itty Infinity

  1. Tom says:

    Awesome post Tom…You’ve experienced where I find renewal…God’s handiwork among the created things, the things that are itty bitty. I wonder why God has me in a position of communicating such big things….te teachings of the Church. Miss you all…share my love with the family.

  2. beads2rosaries says:

    Gratitude and perspective – usually, the same coin! Someone said to me not long ago that they “needed” certain technology to survive. I reminded them that 1 in 8 persons in the USA will go to bed hungry. Need and want – gratitude and perspective – can go the distance and becomes a great refuge even in the greatest of trials. If we are blessed to be enjoying life – why not enjoy it more with time to just be and not do? Marvelous time you shared. I hope to do the same today.

  3. WoopieCushion says:

    Ars vivificandi! Thank you.

  4. Love, love, love this post! I was hiking today with my husband and our dog, getting lost in thought and reminding myself again and again: be present! Be here! O Itty God, indeed!

    With love,

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