To Know When To Pause

Time flies when you’re having fun, right? It also flies when the ups and downs of life take you by the hand and drag you along.

We’re two weeks into October, 15 days into my commitment to write a short blog post every day and I’m falling woefully short of that goal. But, with so many other needful and necessary and good things taking me by the hand, I’m “sorry, not sorry”. This has been a time to dig in and walk through both hard things and blessings. And, in my writing life, it’s a time to hit

This pause doesn’t mean I’ll give up on the goal, just that I’ve given myself grace in not meeting the goal. Sometimes receiving my own graceful permission to pause is actually more gratifying and of greater value than actually achieving any goal. Because, after all, these are MY goals, not God’s.

“Selah” is the name of my writing cabin. It’s where I do more thinking than writing.

I love the Biblical term “selah”. There are many assumed meanings of the word and none that are definite. It’s a musical term, foundĀ 74 times in the Bible, 71 times in the Psalms and three times in the Book of Habakkuk. The meaning I’ve considered is “pause and think of that.”

That’s what I’m doing these days, pausing and thinking — about the hard passages my family is facing and the blessings the Lord is placing in my path. As I pause and think, I’ll undoubtedly write because that’s how I process. Some of that “selah” may wind up here.

I hope you don’t mind.




I’m back to writing for five quick minutes on one-word prompts from Five Minute Friday, alongside others who have accepted the Write 31 Days challenge. Today’s prompt is “when” and in a few days we’re to write on “pause”. Today, you get both words. A “twofer”. You can find links to all of my Write 31 Days posts here. The photo I chose to feature above is some lucky woman sitting by a body of water. That’s not me, but I can pretend. It’s where I’d be if time and circumstances allowed — pausing and reflecting by the water.

In this day, my heart is both heavy and joyful as I consider the life of my earthly spiritual “father” Eugene Peterson. Eugene has been my guide, my confidante and my friend as I’ve navigated my faith these 40+ years. (I write about him here.) His biblical paraphrase The Message was the first protestant Bible I owned and his book Run with the Horses changed my life and grew my faith. The Lord is calling Eugene home to glory as we speak. God-speed, Eugene.


  1. Lea-Ann

    Selah…. As I study, reflect, and pray while trying to make choices i think God is putting in front of me…. Will uphold you and yours in prayer as well.

  2. Tara

    I love the Message translation. Prayers as Eugene says goodbye to the earthly life. Also grace is such a gift. We understand you are needed elsewhere. You’ll return when you can and we’ll be ready to push play.

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