I went to what seemed to be the perfect world this weekend. Beautiful blue skies with picture-perfect clouds. Even the rainy days are beautiful to my eye. There are no skyscrapers, no traffic, not much retail, and the air gives off a feeling of peace and calm. I found my mind in two perfect worlds apart.
We travel less than 200 miles to visit the Amish community in Ethridge, Tennessee. We visited this area last year, but it was late spring, and the air was different. The attention was on brightness and new growth. We enjoyed garden-fresh produce, fresh bread, wildflowers, and children running free most of the day.
A Different Season
This recent visit found the land dry and tired. Cornstalks were bundled and dogs were so tired there was no urgency to get up when visitors arrived. This is not a negative viewpoint. It is an observation, something that grabbed my attention after a day of visiting this community. Children were spending more hours in the white, one-room schoolhouses that stood alone in a golden field. Mothers were more visible. They ran the shop while keeping up the daily routines of the family. The fields were dotted with blue. Fathers and young boys who had reached the transitional age (maybe 10 or 12… not sure) saw the sun rise daily. School acquires less time as they begin to learn the family trades.
Their energy is focused on their calling. The trade they’ve developed is their cornerstone…their purpose. A leather smith is not concerned with building cedar chairs. The family growing pumpkins has no worries about milking cows or weaving baskets. These people are focused. They have a community and they depend on one another without fear. Find your calling, do that each day, and let life take care of itself. My soul yearns for this. Strangely enough, it took seeing two perfect worlds apart to recognize this epiphany. My mind tells me my world is perfect. Their minds say the same. I now agree with both.
The World I Am In
The world I live in thrives on movement. It craves individuality and desires to be in the “right” place. Color abounds and time moves fast. Everyone is looking to stand out but also blend in. I find it overwhelming and invigorating, often in the same breath. My soul knows I am created for a given purpose, but my mind often wants to chase what is not made for me. This world can be noisy. It is alive, beautiful, inspiring, and full of possibilities, but oh so very confusing. I have found two perfect worlds apart from one another with wonderful distance. Both have the same number of hours in a day. Both are continuing at their own unique pace. Neither one is wrong. But neither one is truly flawless. These are simply two perfect worlds apart.
Curiosity Has Us
Isn’t it interesting how we can re-center ourselves through others? I remain content in the place where I have been set but not without curiosity. I seek my purpose and grasp the world I am in. All the while, I am learning and discovering life from a world that seems so far away, so different. Is it better? Probably not. I am certain the Amish are just as curious. They see our world driving through their community. They stare, we stare. How can they not wonder what it may be like to step into a different “perfect” world?
Two Perfect Worlds Apart
Perfect is subjective. Looking from the outside is an easy way to see perfection. It is inspiring but need not be our real perception. My visits to the Amish community ground me. I’m reminded that I am here for a purpose…we all are. I cannot do everything that seems charming for I am not created to do what you are doing. Seeing two perfect worlds apart is a perfect example. It is all beautiful and perfectly created, but everything is not for all of us. My calling is mine and yours belongs to you. This is what causes two perfect worlds apart to continually harmonize and inspire.