Wednesday, July 09, 2008

On shopping and death

Alice was planning to stay for a week, but her time has extended a few days due to the joys of flying stand-by. We don't mind at all, and we hope she doesn't mind either! She was supposed to fly home today, but I think she may be able to fly home by Thursday morning. Meanwhile, we've just extended shopping trips. Today, we went to Goodwill and Big Lots. I took Kristofer, Kathleen, Kylie, Kade and Konner as well. I was pleased to find some dress shoes for Konner, flip flops for four kids, a very cool bead covering for the girls' bedroom, four Frisbees, and the movie Toturo (a long-time family favorite) -- all while staying on a strict budget.

When we got home, Keri Lynn and her friend Briana were engrossed in the second part of Pride and Prejudice, so -- of course! -- I plopped myself down on the couch to watch it, too, you know, in case it ended differently than the last 50 times I'd seen it. It didn't. I loved it.

Laundry still sits unattended and is starting to spill out of the laundry room like molten lava. Scary. I'm pretty sure I'm starting to smell sulfur.

It's been really funny to watch Alice with Kody. She really enjoys him and appreciates his lack of brain power. She also gets a kick out of how chubby he is. She calls him "substantial." The kids have taken to calling him S.D. (Substantial Dog).

On a more serious note, I've been thinking a lot about death lately. When we took our trip to California, we found out about two deaths of people that we knew. A lady in my homeschool group and a friend at church. Both women were close to my age. When we returned from our trip, we got the sad news that our church's children's director had lost her son to complications he'd received in a motorcycle accident. He was only 30 years old. So many families with so many losses.

It made me think about how I would deal with a grown child's death. Brenda was at church on Sunday, not even two weeks from the death of her son, ministering to the children, receiving tearful hugs. I thought perhaps for her it was easier to just keep stepping instead of falling down crying. She continues to trust in the Lord and prays more and feels the prayers of others more. As she told me on Sunday, "This is where the rubber meets the road." She's right. It is the times of pain and loss that we must rely on God all the more.

Tonight, I was reading from one of my very favorite books. The Hawk and the Dove, by Penelope Wilcock. I highly recommend this trilogy which comes in one book binding. Cormac, a monk, has just lost a dear friend, another monk in his monastery:

Is this your healing? Cormac prayed silently in the bitterness of his soul. To waken my heart to love and friendship and then flood it with this pain? Is this your light, your gift, your way -- this agony?

He did not expect an answer. He was filled with the anger and desolation of his loss. He was unprepared for the word, whispered deep in his soul, from somewhere as far outside himself as the stars, yet as near as his own shuddering breath: 'Yes.'
As I read those words, it struck me anew about the power of love and how we often look at the pain of death without looking at the privilege of that pain. The pain means we have loved and been loved. The pain means we have lived. Blessed be the name of the Lord.


Qtpies7 said...

It is still hard to combine those things after some hurts. But death happens to everyone and is somethign you have to deal with, what does it matter if it is now or in 10 years? You still must grieve the loss.
But from a parent's standpoint, it would be hard, parents are not supposed to bury their children. The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh, blessed be the name of the Lord.

Twilight Sky said...

Hey Mom!

I'm amazed at how Ms. Brenda is taking it. I'm sure she's feeling all the prayers from our church. It's still must be very painful. I hope I never have to go through the death of one of my children.

I got a new layout if you want to come see it!

I love you!
Keri Lynn

Pen of Jen said...

The reflections on death that you close with are good. I have always known about death as my dad was killed before I was born and heard of this awful word forever.

When I became a Christian the word changed it's meaning. Rejoicing for the saved, grief stricken and more resolute because of the lost.

BTW..we are nearing an eruption here...frightening yet with your eyewitness account you can relate to the shear horror we are experiencing here!!! No relief in sight as too much mud to clean up.