This is the view from my balcony in Charlotte. While it might not strike you as beautiful or peaceful, I love it. I drink my morning coffee out there most days and – having been inspired by a friend whose view is the Chicago skyline – I sit there and pray for strangers:
- The people who sold their personal things at that – now closed – pawn shop because they needed the cash,
- Those who drive through the CVS Pharmacy window without health insurance,
- The people who will soon open their business in the space where the windows are now boarded up (as well as the owners/brewers of the new Pilot Brewing next door who seem like very nice people.)
My Chicago friends moved into a high rise in Streeterville upon retirement and told me that – in the evening as lights came on – they used those lights like prayer beads. A light in the blue building would come on and they’d pray for whoever lives in that apartment. A light in an office building would pop on and they’d pray for whomever was working late at their desks, for the late night cleaning crew, for the security guards in that skyscraper.
Whether the view from your porch or your window includes homes like yours or birds or a strip shopping center or a parking lot, there is someone or something to pray for. And if you are as quiet-time challenged as I am, even five minutes works wonders. It’s a calming way to start the day.