Friday, June 3, 2011

what my life's made of

What is your life made of?

Mine is made of tea in the morning, tennis balls in the backyard, scraps of cloth and conversations with God as I go.  The phone rings and it's Grampie who isn't sure who I am or why he's called but always asks, "How things are going over there?" and, "How's J getting along?" and "Let us know if we can do anything for you," as though there was actually something he could do for me from where he sits on his couch with his head drooping into constant naps.

Mine is sometimes made of time with friends and phone calls with siblings--like my mother, I could count them, having heard from all four of mine this week.  It's made of an open Bible on my bed, my journal and pen in the ready position along side, for the insight God will surely give.  Even when I thought I could write a novel, even when I spent thinking up scenes and conversations between characters, my heart and mind would thirst for the clean water of such meditative reading and writing.  My day is made up of words that tumble off my fingers and on this very computer screen, sometimes revealing themselves to be God-breathed, other times fat with my very human self.
My life is made of errands and bill-paying and meeting Beve for lunch and the elders for dinner and taking them their pills, creating quilts, buying fabric (maybe that's an addiction, like all those fabric-addicted women refuse to admit, but it isn't for me! Smile!), sometimes making meals, sometimes (when my energy and pain are in sync) doing other domestic tasks, organizing, rearranging, reading, sitting in the sun (if there ever is any!).

My life is made up of worries for my children, about their present concerns (plane flights that I've never been completely comfortable with), their immediate future endeavors, both amazing and worrisome (E's trip, J's "NO way, not again!" possible repeat surgery), and more distant future (the girls' move to Seattle and their prospective jobs and education).  These things sit at the corners of my brain right behind my eyes where I can almost see them every moment of every day so it takes discipline to turn from them.  Turn them to God where they belong.  And my concerns for the Beve, my closest friend and lover, who shares with me his every burden so I know them and worry over them like a cow with her cud, chewing over and over and over.  Until I finally stop.  Just stop, drop and roll those concerns to the Master burden-bearer.

And my life is made up of praying for those God puts on my heart through out the day.  The ones whose concerns I am acquainted with, and those who simply settle on the park bench of my heart until God the Holy Spirit presses on me on one side and that person on the other I can do no other but have a conversation with them both.

As I talked to my older brother, R, this morning I told him that I live a small life.  Then I corrected that to say it's a hidden one.  That's the truth.  I live a hidden life.  There's a cadence to it that others would find too simple or boring.  But it's what my life is made of.  God doesn't judge by the outward appearances of a person, He said when it was time to find the king for Israel.  He looks at the heart.  By outward appearances, my life isn't much to speak of.  I know that.  One would overlook me without thought.  Think me part of the furniture and pity me for being so.  But they'd be wrong.  Dead wrong.  Because my inner life, the life that counts, is wild and bright and abundant.  Simply hidden.

And do you know why it's hidden?  I told R this this morning as well.  I prayed for a hidden life.  I always wanted it.  Knew it was essential for me.  Because if I wasn't hidden, I'd take credit for my own life. If given half a chance, I'll take credit for any accomplishment God did through this puny body, which He gave me.  I know that.  He knows that.  He knows the pride lurking in broken, nerve-pain shell.  This shell that is HIS temple. Fancy that.  My little shell a temple, yet I would take credit for it if I could.  I would.  I know this very well.  So here I sit. Gladly. Oh, so gladly. The joy comes off me in waves for this little life of mine.  Because it's the only way He shines.

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