In a world of consumerism, injustice, global warming, nuclear proliferation, terrorism, and so much more, it's easy to allow oneself to descend into a pretty dark place. What's needed, in all of our lives, is the capacity to receive those moments of grace that spontaneously erupt, reminding us that though this is a fallen world, it is still a world of staggering beauty, interwoven with gifts of friendship and intimacy. For example:
It's Monday - 5:20 PM. I'm weary as I walk in the door at the house, for about a 90 minute respite before an evening meeting. I'm cheered by seeing my oldest daughter's car. A new high school teacher, she sometimes swings by for a cup of cheer or conversation after her days - days which aren't always encouraging as a new teacher. My days can have their stresses too, and this day has had its share. The house is empty. She must be running. When she returns, we chat a bit and then she says she needs to get home. I sit at the piano and start to play: am - em - F - am - em - F - G - C. Simple. Plaintive. She sits and listens, and then picks up her viola and joins in. Soon our hearts are entwined in melody and we move from "Ode to Joy" to overtones of "Jesus Loves Me" back to the simple progression - ascending, descending, until finally we finish. "Thanks Dad" she says as she puts her instrument away. We hug and she walks out the door, both of us knowing that our souls have shared a moment together - nothing deep, or planned, or special - just a moment.
A window of grace has just been opened. Unanticipated, it's waters refreshed both of our souls, giving us just that sustenance that helps one move forward, honestly, into the needs of the world. Cherish relationships. Create. Listen. Absorb. Worship. It's all part of the fabric of life.