Tuesday, June 10, 2014

stumbling in the dark

*resurrects blog again* (How many lives has this thing had anyway?)

Sorry. I've been busy with lots of other types of writing, which is good, but I didn't really mean to neglect this for so long. But then, I never do. So...oops.

Anyway...recapping the last several months would be ridiculous. Most of it is on Facebook or other social networks for those interested. I'll just pick up from here.

This was my Sunday.

A local church in town does kind of a "Narnia experience" type thing. They do one each month and cover each of the seven books. For the first one, in May, Nelson took Sarah to a local park where they ate the "beaver's supper" (fried fish and tea) and recreated the battle with water balloons. Book 2 was my turn. We crossed a river, ate a meal of shared sandwiches, and gave the children time to play in the river. There is also a discussion time.

Everything was going, um, swimmingly...until the leader announced that we would be staying there on the river bank until it got dark.

Wait, what? I knew I had to cross a river. No one mentioned I had to cross a river in the dark.

I'm not the most sure-footed of people (a childhood nickname of mine was Grace, and I can assure you it was completely sarcastic), and I don't see well at night. I hadn't minded the first river crossing (although I had stumbled a couple of times) because it was broad daylight, and I could see. But I didn't like this idea of going back across in the dark.

But they had bussed us there as a group, so it wasn't like I could bail early. I was stuck.

The leader made an analogy of a faith walk just before we started back across. We had to trust that he knew the way, even in the dark. Quite frankly, I trusted him to do just fine. It was myself I wasn't too sure about!

We started out. Sarah clung to me at first, but I think she finally decided she'd do better on her own. She and her walking stick moved on ahead of me a bit. I trudged behind, fumbling for safe rocks to plant my feet on and clinging to my walking stick.

I made it about halfway and panicked. I wasn't quite hyperventilating, but I sure came close.

Then a very kind and gracious lady from behind me stepped up and grabbed my hand. She proceeded to hold my hand the rest of the way, patiently keeping me upright and on the right path. Sadly, it was too dark to see her properly, and I was too busy trying to breathe and other such things to find out her name.

But we made it. God bless her.

And the area was truly beautiful at night. There were hundreds of lightening bugs, and they lit the trees behind us as we walked up the hill away from the river. Sarah said they made the trees look like crystal--she was rather awestruck.

 I pondered the leader's words about walking by faith even we can't see the path very well. If the river at night is a tangible example of that sort of faith, I clearly fail. Thankfully, though, even in matters of faith and spirituality there are people who can come alongside of us and hold us upright when we stumble. That is what the church is all about. We walk that path together.


Jenn Kirkland said...

All the best communities do keep one another upright and on the path.

karen said...

So this is my third attempt to reply to your comment. Let's see if this one works! (Or if the other two randomly show up later--wouldn't surprise me.)

Anyway, I was just going to say that I agree with you. And another post about a different sort of community is forthcoming (possibly tonight; more likely tomorrow). :)