I love winter trips to the beach, the quieter the better and this December proved to be no exception. I’ve taken to staying in Rockport on the bay, which attracts many birds and not the party crowd that Port Aransas sometimes does. Of course, that means I don’t get to hear the ocean waves crashing off my balcony, but sauntering a few miles down the road to the ferry is no big whoop. The sound of the waves, their incessant ebb and flow speaks to the most essential human experience: simply being in the vastness of time and space. We are reminded of our status as drops in the big bucket of life. Of course the ocean changes, as does the earth, but it remains the primal abyss, the womb from which we have all crawled onto the land.
Who does not identify with the little Sanderling below, a small bird facing the challenge of waiting for random tidbits to wash ashore? Certainly, if time is the cosmic ocean, then much of our lives are spent running around looking for these moments of discovery, of existential nourishment.
May we find peace in the ebb and flow of whimsy, in the depth and breadth of an ocean of time and space we can never fully apprehend or elude. Spending a few minutes with a little bird might be just the thing to ward off the demons of discontent and bring the gift of humility into our hearts.