I have become, in the past few years, a seeker of the light. Now that it doesn’t pour over my shoulders each day, unasked and abundant, I’ve learned to keep an eye out for it. I can’t make it appear, but I still crave it, and I am learning to watch for—and appreciate—what light there is.
Not only will I help you pack this elk out, I will tan the hide to show you how much I care. My parents showed me a healthy marriage takes patience, compassion, and humility. I missed the part about applying those values to a good match. In my mind, Chris’s love of the outdoors was enough glue to link our mismatched hearts. We couldn’t have been more different. Why did I marry him?
I remember which bookcase it was on, where it was on the shelf, what the light was like. Maybe I opened it to a sentence that might as well have been in neon, a passage I admired for its construction and loved for its truth. I've kept the book all these years and reread it, or at least part of it, a few times (evidenced by the geological strata of marginal notes). And for decades I’ve kept a little sign on my desk with one of her sentences, printed in a font that now seems to scream 1990s: “Work is the backbone of a properly conducted life, serving at once to give it shape and hold it up.”
So what would it look like for us to hold in tension both this graced capacity for making a secure dwelling as well as the possibility of leaving this dwelling? For me, part of this tension can be answered by looking at the architecture of a house.
A wise friend once told me that there is always some element of sacrifice involved to help something or someone else flourish. And in those painful moments reckoning what was happening with the dog that we loved, I realized that blessing creation, both human and non-human alike, might not be what you expect and usually comes at a cost.