Pastor's Pen
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August 15, 2013, 11:28 AM

Words from Rick





                                Time  Away ...........Part 2

I am writing today from the cool mountains of north Georgia, sitting on my mother’s porch sipping a cup of coffee. It is quiet, veryquiet! The cool breeze makes the leaves in thehickory trees sing and, with the exception of a barking dog around the corner, that is about the only sound I hear.Yesterday, mother and I drove over the mountains to Highlands, N.C. where we had lunch Time Away and visited with a dear, old friend, Mae, a lady who wears a paintedon smile, loves the Lord,and her beloved mountains. We had a delightful 30-minute visit with this homebound saint and I enjoyed hearing their old stories of how it used to be on Main Street, Highlands. On the way back to Main Street, we passed a small church and just outside my driver’s window I saw, in the church parking lot, a mother bear and two little cubs moving from one wooded area to another. Beautiful, black bears with mother moving ahead and the two little ones following close behind, Very quiet, they were very quiet. About 5 p.m. once again reading on the porch, mother came out to see what I was doing. Shesaid, “LOOK, LOOK, over the railing, just down from your left, about 20 yards on your left, a bear.” She said that it was about 80-100 pounds. We watched it waddle down to a blueberry bush, stand up and pull branches down to eat. It was very quiet, very quiet. Two bear sightings (four bears total) in one day. One could get used to the quiet of the mountains! It has caused me to ponder a lot about life. Questions like, “Must we be distracted every minute of the day?” “How much of our day is bombarded with noise — traffic, leaf blowers, music that drowns out the sounds my car is making, people who speak exceptionally loudly.” The silence we seek is more than absence of noise; silence is a stillness, a unity of conscious ness that gives focus. True silence, I believe, touches every aspect of life — body, soul and spirit. Our Scriptures have commended silence for thousands of years. Here are a few verses I have gone back to while sitting on the porch: “Be still, and know that I am God!” (Psalm 46:10); “In the morning, while it was still very dark, he (Jesus) got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed.” (Mark 1:35); “For God alone my soul waits in silence from Him comes my salvation.” (Psalm 62:1-2); “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable to you, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14)

 Dr. Rick Baggett is pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Ardmore (the church with the bells) and can be reached at:

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