C.S. Lewis described pain as ‘the megaphone of God.’
Are we listening? What does it take to hear?
No man is an Island
No man is an island, Entire of itself, Every man is a piece of the continent, A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
Or of thine own were:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.
— John Donne (Reportedly written while convalescing from what was thought to be the bubonic plague)
“In his face there came to be a brooding peace that is seen most often in the faces of the very sorrowful or the very wise. But still he wandered through the streets of the town, always silent and alone.” — C.M.
Of all the goodbyes, why has this wounded so deeply?
There were others held in higher esteem, futures that shone brighter still.
But why this? Why now?
Was it the nonjudgmental welcome?
Your feigned confusion with my questions, and the honest and creative response.
Even when the answer was beyond you, you walked through the depth of the maze with me, both guided by light one step ahead.
(Though time and again, I wondered if you were there, and waited until I arrived there, too.)
At the end of the maze, I look back and realize it was not perfection, not skill, not beauty, not abundance… No.
It was just a willingness to walk together — to wander, to be lost, to wait, to be found… repeating this again and again on this path full of strange and unexpected turns.
That it was a choice. To choose the same again, and again, and again.
And I think the wound is this.
At the end of the maze, I see a fork in the road.
One is well suited to you, and the other, me.
There is no reason to choose any other. Logically, we should embark our own.
You asked why ‘joy’ was the most difficult one for me.
It is this: To live with unknowns and the painful aftermath…
Yet believing that all is well and will be well.
To sit silently, bearing pain and wondering about the meaning.
To be reasonably happy here, and supremely happy in the next.
To wake up.
Those seconds of blissful forgetfulness.
To be washed over by these same waves over and again.
The anchor is faith and hope in Him.
Healing is with Him, too.
(That this will not be known here, until the day we stand. That, too, is well.)
Tonight, the wound is fresh, and deepens with understanding.
But ‘all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well.’