March 5, 2011

A Magic Moment

One summer vacation when our grandchildren were teenagers, they created a game they called Bucket of Words. It involved describing a word to your teammates which was contributed by the opposing team. You were given only thirty seconds to accomplish that task, and of course, you couldn’t say the word or any part of it.

Grandson Ryan was an English major and an experienced Scrabble player, so his team won often by stumping the opposition with words like zeolite and zoon.

I didn't play, but if I had, my contribution would have been Selah, a word that appears seventy-four times in the Bible, seventy-one times in Psalms alone. Selah is a difficult Hebrew word to translate, so I suspect it would have stumped everyone.

The definition I like best is that Selah is a prompt for a pause . . . a suggestion to stop for a moment, to think, to meditate, to reflect and to sense God's presence.

Margaret Alexander was an accomplished poet and artist who devoted many hours to capturing the awesome beauty of the hills and valleys of the Finger Lakes. When she sold her home overlooking Keuka Lake to Nancy and me in 1974, Margaret gave us several of her paintings. On the back of one she called Mellow Autumn Haze, Margaret wrote:

"Mellow autumn haze brings peace after turbulence. There is an instant just before sunset when all is enhanced . . . ordinary things are jeweled. We call it, The Magic Moment."

We should all look for the Magic Moments in our lives, and when they occur, may we pause to think, to meditate, to reflect and to appreciate God’s presence in our lives. Selah