Barbara Brown Taylor, one of my favorite authors, was once asked the question, "What is saving your life right now?" Sarah Bessey, one of my favorite bloggers, rose to the challenge and answered the question, and I feel I must as well. Far too many days I get caught up in the struggle of getting by; the work of laundry and of listening, floods of emails and planning and reports, the sounds of fighting (and the act of separating) children, of cleaning up and preparing for another round of the same tomorrow. Sometimes it seems too much and I just retreat into my shell. My words are as short as my patience and I cut myself off from the world for a while. My introverted nature becomes a crutch that protects me, an excuse to shelter me from the world.
I meet my pastor (and friend) for lunch and we catch up on family, and ministry and life.
I catch up with friends and colleagues at a staff reception after a long, quiet summer of isolated, disconnected work.
I snuggle in bed with my daughter to read her a book, and watch my son and husband doing the same thing.
I anticipate a date night after a LOOOONNNGG absence of babysitters (thank you, VBS, for the free childcare).
I read an email from a friend that is going through a similar inward journey.
And suddenly, I remember I am not alone, I am not just an individual, but I am a part of a community. I am connected, I am supported, I am accepted, and I am loved. And I have the same gifts of connection, support, acceptance, and love to offer to others.
What is saving my life right now is the reminder that I don't have to make it alone; instead, God has created us all to be family to one another. May God bless the beautiful family we are creating--the family of God-- and help us to be a blessing to others.