Lucy Mae is unhurried when we walk now, like the way we are saying goodbye to her—in the slow passing of each moment. And there are things you don’t want to forget, like the smooth silk of her fur and the way she puts her ears down when she is happy to see you. We count ourselves blessed for the years she has made our lives richer. The ways she has taught us about love are endless, and we will be reaping them for years to come. And it’s been hard—this slow dying; the not knowing and the waiting and standing by helplessly.
“It’s part of life,” one of the band dads told me yesterday, as I stood before him with my eyes welling. And we talked about beauty from ashes and the risks of falling in love.
My friend Shelly said it best. When we were at Allume, the women there prayed with me as I trembled with a broken heart and Shelly said, “It seems like the perfect picture of what sin has done to this world. That this innocent creature who loves so unconditionally has to pay the price.” Or something like that.
So I’ve been thinking of that; I’ve been thinking about the way things are broken and how God touches our hearts as we wrestle them through. The other day, we ambled slow down the street—she with her shuffling gait and me thinking of all I need to do. A neighbor stopped her car in the street to ask how our girl was doing and I just shook my head. As I stood by her car, I noticed the cherry tree in the yard beside us—the leaves turning color and the branches heavy with round, plump fruit. And darting in out, feasting on those berries was a flock of Cedar Waxwings, and their beauty spoke life into that moment. Lucy Mae and I stood under that tree in joy and wonder for the longest time.
I let the to-do list in my head go away. And I let that moment burn in my memory like a slow-kindled fire.
Over at The High Calling today, we’re starting a new book club discussion on Todd Henry’s Die Empty. It’s a book about pouring ourselves out every day and it’s speaking some good things into my life right now. Will you join us? If you leave a comment over there, you’ll be entered for a chance to win a copy of the book.
How do you embrace the God-joy? Every Monday I’ll be sharing one of my Playdates with God. I would love to hear about yours. It can be anything: outside, quiet time. Maybe it’s solitary. Maybe it’s loud and crowded. Just find Him. Be with Him. Grab my button at the bottom of the page and join us:
The Playdates button: