Saturday, April 20, 2013


It usually comes slowly, gradually building strength. Like a self-formed movement of reform in the household, it tightens its grasp just when thoughts of freedom rang loud enough for all to hear. The
sound of silence is deafening & the lull in the quiet chatters of fear turn a warm hearth & heart & home icy cold.

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This week has been a doozy, no? I’ve been glued to my phone. My computer. My thought-life--which has taken off running wild in the wind of fear & misunderstanding & sadness. I’ve been distracted. Jon
asked me again this morning what was on my mind.

A lot, actually.

I wrote a letter to thatcher. I told him to do things that I later realized even I struggle with. Particularly, the "do hard things" part. I keep thinking about his world--the one he will raise his
children in. the one that keeps disappointing, keeps polluting, & keeps stretching my strength & faith & hope for the future.

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And I keep thinking that raising this kid (we've only broached a year, people) is much harder than I thought it would be. Much more exhausting & frustrating & 'just keep to a dang schedule, punk' than I
expected. The love runs much deeper, too--it surprises me sometimes. to know that my heart breaks for him already, to know that our love for his little soul runs is more piercing than even I realize.

The truth is that love is probably the reason I’ve felt just a bit suffocated this week.

It’s been easy for me to get up & go to work. Easy for me to come home & lay beside my husband. easy for me to rise in the dead-night-hours & feed my kid (again) & fill my coffee cup in the morning & write orders for patients & make phone calls & laugh at funny ecards. It’s been easy for me because I’m comfortable. In my home. In my neighborhood. In my city. Our schools aren't closed. Our neighborhoods aren't on high alert. Our police officers aren't looking for bombing suspects. Our factories haven't exploded.

Oh but they have.

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And that is the grip. That is the threat. That is the vice that sneaks in & leaves cheerio trails across my kitchen floor. I didn't even invite it in--it came anyways & invaded my tranquility. Instead of rocking my roof & leaving me to literally pick up the pieces, I'm left holding on to my comfortable & wanting so badly to let go of the stuff & give it to someone who just lost theirs. The thrill of silence has been replaced with deafening fear. The comforting lull of chatter has left us paranoid about what is coming next--like a mutated game of Telephone. We're prepped, lingering, so that now in the next moments
or hours or days when the sound waves blast that "something else has happened", the shock waves probably won't be quite as deafening.

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The truth is that in my routine--my resting & writing & calling & walking & LIVING--I am processing the why's & how's & who's & "what the hell’s & how could you's". And I didn't walk down Boylston Street this week or sign my address in the city of Waco or hear babies muffled cries or engage in negotiations with wayward world powers or plan a funeral. But I did LIVE. And those neighborhoods & children &people & fumes, that shrapnel & chaos & tragedy & threat, those marks they left & people they hurt & time they stole--those are REAL. And they are mine just as much as they are theirs--the people of Boston, of Waco, of Philadelphia, of North Korea. And when pain & fear & suffocating futures threaten to damper the call of freedom, we all have 2 choices really. To fall slowly, letting fear invade & vice-grip
of the unknown become our permissive stingray envenomation. Or to rise up. To greet the mornings with new hope. To find a world where there are helpers, heroes, & fighters. To raise a world in our children that is hopeful, brave, & based on the sovereignty of God's promises.

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I tend to like the silence; my solace lies there. But I’m learning to like the chaos, too. My growth comes from the latter. And somewhere in between lays a place of buoyancy & balance. I choose to rise. I choose to greet & grow & plant & help & nurture. I choose to live on & move on.

And best of all, I choose to look up.

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