Poetry & Words, Theology

Rivers of Light

August 2013 - Aveline's tangled hair looking out window in morning lightThere’s something so pure about the morning light. It falls through the sky in a way it does no other time of the day, it falls and dances and pulls the air around it into gossamer waves. The early hours pull and push and twist the light into an opaque filter that infuses the morning in possibility. Awash in new mercies, morning light stands up  strong against uncertainty and tugs my eyes and heart upward, to the Light, to the Giver of light, to the Hope of all living things.

Jobs, plans, circumstances — these offer no promise of constancy, but Jesus does. When the future looks as temporary as words etched into sand at high tide, when faced with uncertainty, there is a Rock. There is an Anchor.

And there is morning light, a tiny glimpse of light eternal, to spring up each day and remind us all that He is constant, He is never-changing, He is rivers of light.

“You’re in a cosmos
star-flung with constellations by God,
A world God wakes up each morning
and puts to bed each night.
God dips water from the ocean
and gives the land a drink.
God, God-revealed, does all this.”
-Amos 5:8, The Message translation

Life in Photos, Poetry & Words, Theology

Spelling out hope in all kinds of ways

June 2013 - Aveline waking up near window
June 2013 - Aveline looking out window

We wake up slowly this morning, the hum of the air conditioner and the dehumidifier a constant reminder of the tropical climate. They are the new silent, the steady noise which blends into the background and becomes a part of these walls and this life.

Outside, the landscapers’ lawn mowers rattle across the sidewalks and through the landscaping mulch, sending a spray of pebbles and bark across the bottom third of the front door. I cringe a little, thinking of the helpless, newly-transplanted moss rose and marigolds in terracotta pots on the front stoop.  The new pinwheel, whirring happily to the blast of mower exhaust, doesn’t mind. It just spins and blends the colors into a sphere anyway.

Aveline wants to see it all, and settles in by the second-story window to watch. It’s a Monday-morning routine, at least when the rain stays away long enough for the landscapers to trim and edge and cut and sweep.

Maybe later, we’ll spread out a towel on the narrow strip of sidewalk in front of the door, and sit side-by-side in the sun to “make ABCs” on the concrete, until our fingers and knees are covered in dusty blue and pink and yellow.

She wants to “make ABCs” with her pens and crayons and chalk, this one, not houses or trees or little boys and girls. She flips book pages and pretends to read, and screeches “TWO A’s!” whenever she spots a word which has, indeed, two letter A’s. She can’t pronounce her own name, but she can make a letter “T” from pretzel sticks, and she turns her felt number 2 upside-down to “make Z”.

I don’t know where she gets these crazy ideas. I know how it feels to love letters, though.

I love letters. I love the words you can make from them. I love that 26 characters can be scrambled and pushed into thousands and thousands of different orders to spell out love, or fear, or hope, or happiness.

May she grow up to spell out lots and lots and lots of hope.

Poetry & Words

Together in the Morning Light: My Waking Thoughts on Life with my Two Loves

blue Moroccan lantern with green and black canvas in background

purple yarn with wood grain table in background

vintage corticelli silk thread / belding richardson button hole twist

wooden kitchen chair with white IKEA RITVA cushion and IKEA RENS sheepskin

We wake up too early, to the uneven rhythm of traffic slowing and starting again as a multicolored ribbon of cars passes in waves through the toll booth. Aveline stirs and fusses, increasing in volume until the sputtering grunts grow into a jarring cry. She presses her teary face against the slats of the crib, gripping tightly with dimpled hands as she wobbles her way into a kneeling position.

I sit up, glancing upward at the cacophonous din of pigeons who’ve taken up unwanted residence in an opening in the eaves. The water pipes groan and heave, and I hear the splash of hot water making its way through the shower head in the adjoining room as Josiah prepares for the day. I rub my eyes, reach out my arms and smile through a tired fog as Aveline’s fingers quickly grab onto me. I pick her up and pull her close. She buries her warm face in my shoulder and breathes a sigh, kicking her legs in happiness.

I carry her into the living room, letting my eyes truly see all the colors and light and beauty the new day holds. The white light enveloping the chair in the corner. The bright hues of the yarn and thread on the table. The hint of red in Aveline’s hair. Give me strength for the day, Lord, I quietly pray. Thank you for life. I change Aveline’s diaper, tossing her green pajamas into the laundry basket, smiling to myself at the sight of the heap of tiny, rumpled clothes. I pull a bright yellow mod dress off a hanger, and slip it over her strawberry blond head. The sixties-esque daisies on the dress make me smile.

Josiah walks into the kitchen, his wet hair hanging in curls. He reaches for Aveline, holding her in one arm while he measures out coffee grounds. My heart nearly overflows. My two loves, sleepy-headed and happy, together in the kitchen in the morning light. She’s learning how to make coffee, he says, and she turns around to look at me, grinning from ear to ear.

Later, she sits on his lap while he works on the iPhone game he is creating. I sit across the room, letting the bold flavors of my coffee curl around my tongue. I stare into the steaming liquid. Coffee and chocolate, I think to myself. Exactly the color of his eyes.

I read Genesis, and Jacob’s blessing speaks to me.

The God before whom walked
my fathers Abraham and Isaac,
The God who has been my shepherd
all my life long to this very day,
The Angel who delivered me from every evil,
Bless the boys.
May my name be echoed in their lives,
and the names of Abraham and Isaac, my fathers,
And may they grow…