Sometimes our life reminds me of a forest in which there is a graceful clearing and in that opening a house, an orchard and garden, comfortable shades, and flowers red and yellow in the sun, a pattern made in the light for the light to return to. The forest is mostly dark, its ways to be made anew day after day, the dark richer than the light and more blessed, provided we stay brave enough to keep on going in. ~Wendell Berry from “The Country of Marriage”
Our daughter and her new husband started their married life yesterday with a ceremony on the farm. God invites them into the orchard and yard where His garden is blooming. It is here where His light illuminates the darkness, and where, each day for the rest of their lives, their covenant with one another mirrors their covenant with God as His children.
Even on the dark days, the light pursues them. Even on the dark days, their brave love will bloom.
It’s a dangerous business… going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.
— J.R.R. Tolkien
Every day I embark on new adventure, like it or not. The moment I wake from dreams and acknowledge a new morning, when my eyes and ears open and take it in, when I first step onto the floor and start my journey–I pray the road rises to meet me and leads me where I need to go.
Inside my head and inside my house, all appears routine and certain. The moment I walk out the door, down the steps and make my way into the day, there awaits an unpredictable and often hostile world. Rather than armor myself, girding for disaster, I need to “keep my feet.” If I know where I’m about to step, I’m more likely to be ready for the one after–less likely to stroll blindly into a deep ditch, stumble oblivious into a hornet’s nest, disappear unexpectedly into a hidden crevasse, swept completely away in a gust of wind.
It’s a dangerous business, this waking up and living.
(to my three good friends from down the road who love our big leaf maple tree, and who always request this song when I’m playing piano for Sunday School at Wiser Lake Chapel)
I’ve got roots growing down to the water, I’ve got leaves growing up to the sunshine and the fruit that I bear is a sign of life in me, I am shade from the hot summer sundown, I am nest for the birds of the heaven, I’m becoming what the Lord of trees has meant me to be.
A strong young tree…. ~Ken Medema from “The Tree Song”