Have you ever visited a place you could never forget? For me that place is Long Key State Park. Located in the Florida Keys, Long Key is a great place for being. When I say being, I mean a time to live in the moment. It’s an experience marked by feeling more closely connected to the natural world. When our activities slow from a sprint to a crawl, we can better appreciate all of creation.
Last October we rented a small RV from Cruise America and spent a few days in Long Key State Park. There, every campsite is oceanfront property. The rhythm of the waves is a constant soundtrack. Gentle sea breezes keep mosquitos away. Most of the sites are lined with trees to afford privacy from neighbors. Something amazing happens when you park an RV, get out comfortable camp chairs, and sit down facing the ocean. You don’t want to leave.
When asked, “What did you do while you were there?” I responded, “Nothing, and it was the best nothing of my life.” I loved to sit and watch the birds at low tide while they pecked among natural debris to find food. When they flew away I watched a lone ant marching in the sand. Maybe he was a scout for the rest of the colony. In the evening I saw the soft glow of moonlight reflect upon the surface of the water. The next morning the sky was ablaze of color as the sun rose above the horizon. I realized that all of this nothing really was something. The world was full of life but I was always too busy to notice. I grew to appreciate the little things.
So why did I need to go all the way to the Florida Keys to be? That’s definitely food for thought. For me, being requires several days of low activity and uninterrupted time in the outdoors. If those conditions are met in a different location so be it. Camping in one place for several days definitely lends itself to being. As I write this I am saddened to realize my one experience of living in the moment happened almost a year ago. How ironic to make doing nothing my new goal.
Being is a state of rest that we rarely experience. According to the book of Genesis, after God created the earth, he rested on the seventh day. I like to imagine God in a state of being. On His day of rest, God saw everything He had made, and said, “It is good.”
When have you experienced being? Leave a comment and tell me about it. Let’s support each other in being more and doing less.