I lived in a house, no let me start over. I lived in a home that echoed with 30 years worth of our laughter, sweat, anxiety, celebrations, arguments, prayers, tears, Easter egg hunts, middle of the night conversations, daughters’ boyfriends I did not approve of, memories initiated from old photos, music, and hundreds of birthday candles being blown out just after a personal wish that was never, ever shared but always well contemplated before being chosen.
A fire swept through that home 12 days ago and now those echoes have been turned to ashes and blown miles from Paradise California. Perhaps some will eventually mingle with the echoes of your life and loves.
I want to go home. I want all those things back. I want thousands of people’s sufferings to be reversed. I want to wake up from the nightmare. Just like that toddler throwing a tantrum in the middle of the isle in the store, I want my way.
In the early morning darkness of this hotel in Oregon, where we went to look for a tiny little home on wheels and I write this blog, a faint voice can be heard somewhere between my head and my heart, “This is your way, Gary. This is the unique path you must walk during this portion of your life on earth.”
I guess I got my way and I don’t get to see around the corner until I get there. I know that some time around Easter, the land that supported our home will begin gently allowing new life to sprout…daffodils, irises and tulips. The transformation through the resurrection, maybe that is the ultimate way for all of us. Of course, that would require a death of some type, a dark and cold winter, the loss of personal control, the loss of the little, toddler-like “my way” to be replaced with a deeper and much more important, transformed My Way.
Most of us want to run and vacation on some tropical paradise island during the cold winter months. Here in America, millions of “snow birds” we call them head for the deserts of Arizona and California during the winter. Some “flock” to Florida. However, when we face our emotional and spiritual winters, that is not usually an option. It is not part of the My Way. My Way requires facing the suffering while barely being able to hold onto a few threads of hope or faith. It is kind of mystical actually in that it is connected to a mystery. And, that is what the deeper, larger My Way is really all about…a pathway into the Mystery, I think.
Thank you Father, for all those wonderful echoes that now are the sign posts into the Mystery. This isn’t easy. I have tears in my eyes as I write this and those threads of faith are quite thin right now. Yet, past echoes and new echoes of love, like an eternal fog horn, seem to be saying, “Keep moving forward. You and yours are on My Way.”
We all have My Ways. I pray for you as you walk yours. We’ll get there, wherever there is.