very morning, the girls and I gather here to pray, with our fingers and souls tangled.
God made the altar.
We pray for “the food
and the drinks
and the wonderful day.”
Anna always declares the days wonderful before they’ve even begun. Maybe this is a child’s way of declaring God’s goodness, even though there be pain in the world, and on the playground, and in the hurt feelings, and in the not-getting-invited-to-the-slumber party, and in the operating rooms.
Where there is wonder, there is always, always praise.
The child mentors the mother.
The girls board the bus, and I’m alone. I’ve felt an aching loneliness lately, and I can’t put a finger on the reasons why. Today, God has come nearer to fill in the ache, and maybe that’s what the void was for anyway.
He is nearer when I can’t scroll through a feed, when all of our iSomethings are out of reach.
So I — barefoot and in pajamas — drive away. I touch the accelator with my toes and drive away from the feeds, and the phones, and the voices, and the voids that I sometimes think I can fill through pixels. It’s all in the rear view mirror now. I’m making a trail of dust.
And I tell you: I’m not running away; I’m running toward.
I’ve met God in the out of doors, and I ache to get closer, to find more of Him out here in the barbed wire and the dancing leaf and the dusty road and the bare feet and the burning void under my ribs and the single tear falling down my cheek.
There are sanctuaries under skies, and the breeze is the preacher.
I drive country roads, and have church where the gravel hurts under your bare feet. I look like a fool out here, but I’ll be a fool for Christ.
And the world, she whispers to the fool–
Nearer my God to Thee.