Thursday, July 26, 2007

Directions or The Road Which Must Be Traveled

Hi. The preamble to this blog is an email I wrote today to a friend in response to her recognition that today was a hard day for a lot of people in our area. We lost another youngish mom…to cancer. No editing…just my raw words…maybe hard to follow…just thinking and typing and trying to grasp the picture of my heart and thoughts. Aching for other families beginning the journey. Karin's memorial was the first of 3 in a row. No apologies for the choppy thoughts.

It's been a rough spring and summer. No 'do-overs' just hiking the trails of trust...with dust in my eyes. Don't be sad for me, let's just keep encouraging each other to trust God and walk one more day...letting others see Him (hopefully)...stuff and all.

God brings you to mind often. There are certain friends I don't run into often, but when I do, I know there is that understood connection. You have been close to a lot of people who have gone to the other shore...youngish ones. Every one is difficult. It is hard not to have the date seared in our hearts. It's hard not to want to grab the rear-view mirror and look and stare and grasp...I struggle with only having forward eyes. I guess I am learning the cross gives us grace in the forward steps because there is a hope.

Would that the death of yet another young person be life-changing for those almost 900 at her memorial. If even one came to the foot of the cross and responded to it worth it? Maybe our hearts can't answer that yet.Today we remembered an 88yr evangelist and charter church member. He shared with everyone...every neighbor knew the gospel...and got Daily Breads.......the tablecloths were mixed of blue and some white. (at the reception—the day before they were all pink)Karin and Martin both finished their races well. Tomorrow is a 6 month old. C.B.’s grandson. She lost her husband last summer. Will we ever understand God's plan? He is good. (…personal stuff…) I love you my friend.

DIRECTIONS (pic of the Best Man in our wedding...first time to see him since Michael took his journey Home...)

Vacation. I called my mom to review how to get through Harrisburg. Yes, I had Mapquest, but there is standard knowledge that one should be on a certain side of the river to avoid I don’t know what…city traffic, weird signs or something. This side of the river, not that one. Stick with Mapquest. Lost. Turn around. Exits named different on different sides.
Lost again in a small town, but only minutes from a family gathering of over 100 descendants—emotion overtaking truth—direction. Not a “bad” thing, but needing/wanting someone to help me see. Crying most of the 2 ½ -turned 4 hour trip. Training children to read maps while I’m driving. NOT. One gets sick, one has questions that I can’t answer withoutLOOKING AT THE MAP. Even cousins sort of familiar with the area, but not knowing exactly where I was, gave wrong directions. I must have been on the wrong side of the river. Smile (now).

God knows where we are at all times. (Ps. 139) I guess Godquest gets it right every time. Why did the Israelites keep wanting to follow their own way. Lack of trust? God’s Word gives so many directions, confirmations of His presence, leading, guiding, being our Rear Guard…corrections when we’re off course, the mantel when we’re on track…

Had to drive up to Michael’s home area after the reunion on my father’s side. Michael didn’t have to read signs up there—he knew the area. Relief to be at his brother’s house. Restoration. Sweet fellowship. Directions true. On to his sisters’. True directions. “Trust a local.” –like discipleship—watching someone BE in the directions—walk the talk.

At Michael’s childhood home we took the miniature models he built down off the shelf in the office. Quite amazing pieces.

The detail in Michael’s life is so rich yet he was a simple man—embracing life—able to meet a child at their level with complete and profound respect for their personhood. He could see a hurting adult, too—often bringing them to a safe place away from the ‘noise of life’ so they could ‘be’…maybe share the wrong roads they ended up on or just an off choice here or there that brought confusion. I wonder if what he saw was their child-heart—one wanting (sure) direction and someone trustworthy.
Just reflecting on how he would minister—especially today…loss of a young mom to cancer…A husband and dad beginning the awkward journey to a new normal…the 1st time these roads are driven by him, by his children.

Harrisburg, PA. Came back through there. Didn’t mind which side of the (beautiful, serene, inviting) river I was on—just kept following the signs 11/15 and eventually we were through—embracing the small-town-turned-city. The old and the new. Simple life of a child to busy adult with responsibility.

On to Gettysburg—memories of former vacations…the lady whose home the army used…historical sites…like our memories…they become HISTORY. Will we remember how to get there?
Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me." John 14:6
If I can follow that set of directions...I know I will get there.
I ache with you over the "empty bench" in your life. We must get directions to move His time.
Traveling this road with you,
Annie B.
If you want to see more pics of Michael's models...let me know.