My mom told me this would happen. She said that when she was younger, a glass breaking would bother her so much, but she soon found that there were things in life actually worth grieving. Broken dishes and Christmas ornaments seemed mild in comparison. I guess this was her way of telling me: “You can’t sweat the small stuff.”
She was right. As I get older, I’m loosening my hold on things. On Time. Money. Plans. Some nights I pour half a pot of coffee down the drain instead of saving it to microwave in the morning, because Evan likes his coffee fresh. Pots of freshly brewed coffee are God’s new mercies to him, and I remind myself of this instead of picturing literal dollars going down the drain.
I sit with my neighbor sometimes, when she’s out on her front porch. She lost someone recently, and we talk about the way death changes us, last words that were spoken, and how it’s hard to understand what God is doing. The younger me would feel the need for an agenda for these front porch conversations, but lately I’m thinking about how much it means just to have another body beside you when the pain hits. I don’t think God needs me to walk “The Romans Road” with her to communicate the gospel. Sometimes we just sit in silence, watching her cat pretend that tree branches are snakes.
I should be eating fewer carbs now that I’m in my thirties. But when it’s a choice between going home or sharing a late dinner of pizza with friends after Monday night worship, I choose friendship and pizza. I’ve been gaining weight. And friends.
Opening my hands until both palms face heavenward has become a necessary act of worship for me. For too long, I gripped my calendar and held my friendships in a fist. For too long I have believed my small hands a match for the God of Heaven and Earth. No more. Take all of it, God. All that was already yours.
Listen to this sketch