Thursday, October 25, 2012

Quiet

I've been quiet (blog-wise) for several days now, but I'm still here, still getting up and doing life every day, and mostly enjoying it.  A few weeks ago, my head was an ugly place to be, so I've spent this time searching out other places, others' words.  Through Sarah Bessey, I discovered the treasure that is Addie Zierman, and it's just plain weird how her words just fit me, like she knows, and her quiet words whisper strength and solidarity and understanding to me.

And then Tony Jones decided to feature my submission in his series, Questions that Haunt Christianity, so I have been staying engaged in that conversation, and it has been rewarding, in a quiet, internal kind of way.

Going back to work has been good, but it has been hard, too.  I work evening hours, so that means Greg is home with the kids while I am working.  Our church family has been praying for us and checking in on us, and Greg and the kids get along fine in my absence, but that doesn't make it hurt any less to have to be absent.  I hate it.  And every child's voice in the mall makes me turn my head, catch my breath, because in one little instant, I think That's my baby and That isn't my baby and I miss my baby and I wish I was home.  And so, once or thrice during each shift, my eyes well with quiet tears.


This (all of this, all of everything, really) is for a season.  And experiencing all of this against the backdrop of my least-loved season change has been informative.  Addie Zierman wrote, at the beginning of October, some words that keep coming back to me: 

Every year around this time, the sun feels a little farther away, a little more reluctant to appear. The nights get longer, the days get shorter.

I wish I had seen it before, this metaphor. I wish I had understood that God is not farther away just because I feel him less. It’s about orbit, about an angle that is always changing, about the normal rhythms of life.


Earlier this week, I raked the leaves in our backyard, and the kids played for hours in the massive leaf pile.  As I was raking, I stopped to snap this photo.

Everything around this flower is falling, fading, dying.  Her efforts to feel the sun shine on her petals is rewarded with pale, watery October sunlight.  The frosts have started, and this little flower surely won't last long against hard freezes and Nebraska wind.

But the flower isn't worried about any of that.  She's just growing, blooming, because she can and she must.  There is no waiting for the right time to be beautiful, for the optimal season for growth.  She's growing now, because she can't stop the rhythms of life.

I've said both too much and not enough.  I'm going to go back to the quiet now, and try to feel the rhythm.

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