Pressing Pause

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LM sunrise
This post is written to link with Five Minute Friday: write for five minutes on a one-word prompt.  The prompt today is “pause.”

It may just be me, but May seems to be flying past!  The last few weeks have been so relentlessly busy that it has been hard to pause and draw breath.

As I think of the word “pause” today, that’s what I’m longing for.  A bit of space.  A bit of quiet.  A bit of time when I don’t have five hundred things to do!

Conductor directing symphony orchestra

The word “pause” also instantly makes me think of a pause in music, and that reminds me of three things.

A pause is often not the end.  It comes in the middle of the music.  For a moment the tempo slows and the rhythm ceases, but the piece is not over.

A pause catches your attention.  As the music plays on at a steady tempo, it’s easy to switch off and just let it wash over you without really focussing, but a pause draws you in and makes you take notice.

A pause is not a time of switching off but a time of readiness and watching.  As a musician, when I come to a pause, I don’t stop and take a nap.  My attention is on the conductor, my instrument is ready to play, and I am alert, ready to spring back into action when the conductor gives the signal.

And, as I reflect on my busy month, this helps me.  I realise that even when the work is not finished and there is still more to do, those moments to pause are important.  Even if they are short, even if I have not had the chance to switch off properly, there are things which refresh me, and I need to make the most of these.

I’m also reminded of the ways I have been able to pause this month.

This sunset was captured in the midst of an extremely busy weekend.  I literally had one minute to pause and take the photo, but I’m glad I did.

This photo was taken as I rushed to get to a meeting, but it was another chance to pause and appreciate beauty.

Writing has helped me pause, as has listening to worship music, or taking time to play the piano for ten minutes.

We definitely need longer times of rest, but even when those are not possible, we need to find moments to pause.

I’d encourage you to pause for five minutes today- get some fresh air, listen to music, pray, take some time to reflect, whatever it takes to help you stop for a moment and be refreshed.

What are your favourite ways to pause?



21 thoughts on “Pressing Pause

  1. I love your post. Using a musical rest as an example provided me with instant understanding. It is not a time to take a nap necessarily, pausing can be a time to prepare with more focus.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really enjoyed reading your post. It reminded me of a book I have read recently by Jeremy Begbie called “Theology, Music and Time” and I think you would really like that with your understanding of music and timing. I am not a musician (yet), but I really resonated with your point about “pausing’ not being the end, but it deepens the anticipation of what comes next… Thanks again for your post! FMF Neighbor #32

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely post. Gentle reminders. My job has be speaking with people almost constantly and there are times when they pause, while sharing their story, and because of the emotion involved I silently wonder “is this the end?”
    I love that pausing is an option.
    That we aren’t expected to go and go…

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I thought of you as I was writing my post this morning. I knew the music would connect with you as when you use music as examples it connects with me. Music is always a wonderful pause.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lovely post! the music application is SO good! Pauses aren’t long enough to let you sleep. They are long enough to let you rest.
    Visiting from FMF #39.
    Blessings on your weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I learned something new today! I’m in now way musical, so I had no idea that there were moments of pause written into compositions. Obviously I can hear them when I listen to something, but it just never occurred to me that the composer would have to actually put the pause onto the paper. Very interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Marie! Usually there’s an indication of a pause written on the page but it’s up to the player, or the conductor if it’s an orchestra, to decide how long it should be.


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