Twice this week I took my daily walk just before sundown instead of early in the morning. It’s quite a different experience. For one thing, the colors are different. The sunset reflection on the Franklin Mountains is pink, like the watermelon color that gives Albuquerque’s eastern mountains their name. In the fading light everything has a different hue that I suppose artists know all about- but I noticed it in a particular way during these walks.
The sounds are different, too. Already there are some insect sounds along with the doves and the chickens. Maybe the sounds transmit differently when the earth is cooling than when the earth is warming in the morning but there is a softer kind of stillness in the air.
I notice that my own inner landscape is different in the evening as well. Instead of feeling full of plans for the day, I am more inclined to walk myself backwards through the events that filled it. It is a good time to breathe out and unburden.
Mostly on these evening walks I ask for the gift of being present to the One whose presence I might have missed along the way. I try not to try so hard. Sometimes I feel that I am better able to let God tend to me as I walk in the evening. That’s what I hope for and what I need. I know that I have surrendered some of the pretense of control that frames the day when gratitude begins to well up in me. I turn a corner and the sunset sky startles me and I don’t think about being grateful. I just am.