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Showing posts from January, 2011

A Walk

In case you are wondering if the things we are all looking for can really be found, let me say that this afternoon I took a walk, arriving in a roundabout way at a big park near my house. I sat on a bench looking down a hillside that swooped down and then up again with two people walking their respective dogs in the distance, and behind them the tree line and then very, very far off were blue mountains on the horizon. Although I am sure the bench is not far above sea level, I feel like I'm sitting on top of the world there. The wind was cold and as it blew it made a singing sound. My ears were so cold they hurt, but the wind felt like it was sweeping the world clean, blowing in something fresh and new.
On my way back home, I passed the pond, with mallard ducks playing in the shallows. Most of it was frozen. Some of the ice was churned up where the waves had frozen stiff.

We All Wait

In our personal lives, waiting is not a very popular pastime. . . . In fact, most of us consider waiting a waste of time. Perhaps this is because the culture in which we live is basically saying, "Get going! Do something! Show you are able to make a difference! Don't just sit there and wait!" So, for us and for many people, waiting is a dry desert between where we are and where we want to be. We do not enjoy such a place. We want to move out of it and do something worthwhile. ("The Path of Waiting," Henri Nouwen) I think the reason most of us don't think too much about waiting is because we don't realize how much we wait. I hear Christians talk about waiting as if it's a once-in-a-lifetime event, like a solar eclipse. It's easy to identify waiting in the life of someone with an illness, or a long engagement, or a military deployment - but the fact is there is a terrible lot of waiting in the ordinary human existence. After you graduate from hig…

"The Path of Waiting," Henri Nouwen

With the coming of the new year, spent in new settings and with newfound confidence, I'm thinking a lot about where I was this time last year. It was not a good time for me. The first week of 2010, I woke up from the three-month fog and illness associated with the beginning phase of Lyme disease treatment, and discovered that I was actually feeling better. Hope, which had been pretty much squashed into the ground, began to perk up a little. But almost simultaneously, my personal life fell apart in an incredibly gruesome way. A wound opened up in me, pouring out agony that couldn't be stanched.

One of the things that was happening at the time was a grieving process for all I had lost to illness. As symptoms began to drop away, I tried to figure out when was the last time I had really felt well, and realized it was sometime before I went to college. That's right, a fair estimate of how long I had had the disease was ten years - the entire span of my twenties. During that deca…