A Meditation On a Meditation

Hank Mattimore
Reproduced with Permission

Driving to the meditation chapel at St.Eugenes, I listen to this morning's news broadcasts: Occupy Wall Street demonstrations, Greece in financial turmoil, unemployment rates hanging tough, a couple of gang-related murders etc. etc. I want to keep connected with the world around me but not THAT connected. Know what I mean? The news of the day can be a major downer. So I am on the run, escaping the bombardment of troubling news by doing some meditating.

I am trying to stay grounded in the consciousness that God is present in our universe and in my life. I want to believe that He is in charge. "God's in His heaven; all's right with the world," we used to say in more innocent times.

Arriving at St. Eugene's, I take my seat with five or six other people. It's quiet in the chapel, peaceful. I take a few deep breaths and relax. Yes, I think to myself, this is just what I need.

Not two minutes have gone by when I'm distracted at the antics of a little two-year-old girl interacting with her mommy in the bench in front of me. The grouch in me mutters "A meditation chapel is no place for kids."

At first the little kid does manage to stay pretty quiet. But as her mom kneels in prayer, the kid decides to "help" her mommy pray. The little girl gets up close and personal, like about six inches from Mommy's face. She plants an affectionate kiss on her mom's forehead. Not drawing a reaction, the little tyke reaches out and knocks the prayer book out of her mom's hands. "Hey mommy." her actions fairly shout, "pay attention to me."

When he mother tries to shush her, the girl starts to cry. Mom, conscious that now she is creating a distraction to other people trying to pray, picks up her little tot and leaves. I breathe a sigh of relief.

I try to get my own mind back on target. Good grief! Where was I? I was trying to focus on the presence of God before I got interrupted, right? Did I hear God chuckle? Duh! Could it be that He was there right in front of my nose in that little kid? It dawned on me that if we can't mange to see the image of God in little children, we are "hecka" blind, don't you think?"

I leave the chapel with more questions than answers. But it's okay. Maybe my attempt at meditation didn't turn out as I expected but it was okay. God has a way of showing up where you don't expect him.