Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Ten things about this week

Ten things I've loved about this week:

  1. Processing our complicated lives with people who don't need the back-stories to understand.
  2. The luxury of such conversations without watching the clock or waiting for our appointment to be over.
  3. The ease with which tears come and are acknowledged without drama. Just acknowledged and cared for. And moved into the flow of conversation and, "There's a box of Kleenex right there."
  4. Awaiting meals with laughter, preparing them with ease over a kitchen table where homey smells waft from a pot in the oven that takes me back to the most sacred meal of my childhood week: The Sunday roast, with all the family gathered.  
  5. Verily reeking of family together these few days, falling before our friends in our need, them standing behind us in their care, their love, their strength, to see our lives more clearly, help us walk more steadily through the verbal processing and back to the living we must do in our own home.
  6. Under a canopy beneath a starry winter night with snow 18" high on the deck, we bared our winter-white limbs to frostbite and raced to the hot-tub to sink in and say, "Thank you, Jesus," like that first moment was as close to communion, to worship as one might get. The woes of the world, the heavy weight of stress on every bone and muscle let go as the water slides over flesh and buries us in the warmth. And, at least for me, a cessation of pain. Yes, the one place in the world where there's a true cessation of pain is water. And warm water is best of all. So I sank down and sang my hallelujahs and meant it to my marrow.
  7. A movie date with my spouse and our friends when we'd grown weary of our own words for a while. Not weary of meat, though. On the way out of the theater, our friend saw a former student who said, "That movie had too much talking and not enough action for me."  Simplifying and minimizing what was surely one of the best movies I've seen in a long time. Lincoln. Yes, words. Of course words. But brilliant and lives-changing and gut-wrenching and eye-opening. Words that changed minds and words that kept minds from changing course. And words that set a people free who should have long been (and had, after all, been long been setting themselves) free.
  8. We were asked tonight what these beloved friends can do for us in this critical hour of need. We felt blank at the asking. At least I did, and Beve seemed no more articulate. It's been hard for me to reach out and ask. To admit how much I need the body of Christ to do body work for this weaker body just now. Too often I've prided myself on being the strong in the body, the care-giver, the pray-er rather than the prayed-for. And even our small inarticulate attempts of late to reach out have been met with hesitancy. People are busy. So we step away, not wanting to put our stuff on top of theirs. But these few days have given us space to be cared for. Space to admit all there is to admit, no matter how small we feel or how little we believe for our greatest desire.  And just the laying it all on the table, and allowing them to pick it up with us, has lightened the load. More than they can know, more than I have language.
  9. So we stay silent. The silences are sweet as well. The waiting for the next thing, the lack of hurry to fix or advise or organize or do anything but simply be in the silence with us. To sit shiva and hope all at once. Shiva for the dreams now dead, hope because where He lives, He is hope. Where there is life, He gives hope.
  10. And finally, the utter knowledge that we don't drive away alone. This is the sweetest thing. Though we do drive away. Back to face it all, where NOTHING has changed, we aren't alone in this. They are behind us. Even here, such a long day's drive, they are here. And that is gift of the highest measure. And, we are together as we drive away. We haven't always been together in the last few months. This is stark truth. It's been too much, and a creeping separateness has risen. But not today. These last days have solidified something between us. Or reminded us of the solidity already there. We ARE who we are and He has done this great thing in us. This great thing that is the community of our marriage and the community of those who surround us, no matter where they live. We are not alone in this.
So I thank God for these few days, and for the couple who talked, sat, and lived them with us.

1 comment:

E said...

I'm glad the trip was so worthwhile for you. Sounds like it was just what you needed.