Monday, April 10, 2017

When we went to the beach and the world is crazy

I'm going to be honest with you all right now. I'm not sure what I'm doing with this blog these days. I mean, does anyone read blogs anymore? Does anyone write blogs anymore? We are having a bit of an existential crisis, me and the blog.

I do, however, understand that my family (hi grandma!) and also possibly our supporters check the blog regularly. So my apologies for the lapse, though I can't promise it won't happen again.
Last week was spring break, and we went to the beach. How boring and normal, and decidedly not-blog-worthy. After all, nearly the entirety of Atlanta also apparently went to this same beach last week. One day, in fact, we found ourselves sitting on the beach next to a couple who happened to have graduated from the same high school as we did. What a weirdly small world.

We managed to hit our family stride in the second half of the glorious week at the beach. In fact, I think there was one entire day when our older two children didn't even fight. A minor miracle, at the very least. If you must know, though, Isaiah was entirely too clingy all week. I still might unabashedly call this our best family vacation yet. I managed to read four books (I highly recommend this one, please read it immediately); however, I'm not sure if I've mentioned that speed reading is my best life-skill.

The very last day of vacation, our children rode their bikes without complaining for over seven miles. Isaiah napped quietly in the trailer behind Adam's bike and the wind lapped quietly at our heels while the sun poured over onto our shoulders. We spent a few hours at the beach, and then I read on the screened porch while Isaiah napped and we ate dinner and played cards together with nary an unkind word.

The same day we danced on the beach and rode bikes in the sun, Trump ordered an airstrike on Syria in response to the chemical attacks. My dailySkimm the next morning told me about terrorist attacks in Oslo. And today I read about another elementary school shooting, and attacks on Palm Sunday services in Egypt. And it all feels too much, right? Like too heavy a burden to carry alongside twirling daughters and a son who clasps your legs and sobs to be help when all you want to do is read just one more chapter of your book.
I am weighed by the guilt of enjoying the privilege of a trip to the beach. I can't figure out the best way to find my footing in either place of outrage or ignorant bliss, and it turns out that in-between is a lonely place to live. How can I be a mother who delights in the joy of my own children, while also holding space for the reality of how deeply suffering enfolds so many other children all over the globe? How do we parent and live from a place of rootedness in peace and joy, without simply turning a blind eye to the darkest corners of our world and neighborhoods?

Palm Sunday is past, Christ's triumphant entry to shouts of Hosanna and waving branches have only led us ever-closer to the cross. To the dark reality of death and loss, and to a grave that stayed silent for longer than we hoped. This week of anticipation feels fraught with a chasm between the privilege of space I don't take for granted, and the weight of a world that spins ever-closer to something darker than I can bear.
Thousands of years ago marks a day swathed in darkness, and a body racked by pain. Real pain and real darkness. Broken by thorns and vinegar in a wound. And sometimes we still live in this darkness, in the remembering that we needed blood to cover all this sin. But I also remember and hold close, this week especially, the hope that rings like a tolling bell in the not-too-distant future. Because yes the death of Good Friday looms ominous with darkness, but we do not live without hope. Because we know that resurrection is coming, and that the one who defeats all the darkness doesn't tell Thomas, when he doubts, to touch his wholeness but his brokenness. To put his hands into wounds, right into holes - the broken holy places that prove not his death but his victory over it. So we put our hands into the wounds, elbow deep in the blood and pain, because we know the brokenness will be redeemed. Life will be restored. We know that Sunday is coming. 

8 comments:

  1. Great post. I still read blogs. :)

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    1. :-) yay! we should still do a photo session sometime, right? :-) come to Atlanta!

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  2. I read all of your writing. Because you are talented and your words convict and stir me. And because you are just plain fabulous. :)

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  3. I read all of your writing. Because you are talented and your words convict and stir me. And because you are just plain fabulous. :)

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  4. I still read and yours is one of my favorite blogs

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    1. :-) Thanks for saying that! What a sweet comment, you seriously made my day!

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  5. I still read you blogs :) Thank you for sharing your words with us.

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    1. If I knew how to type a heart emoji on my computer, that's what I would put here since that is how I feel about you!

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