Friday, April 29, 2011

And a princess is made...

I know--didn't take this picture. Wouldn't that have been glorious though?

Yes. I did wake up at five a.m. this morning to watch the Royal Wedding. And...I would gladly give up an hour or two of sleep many, many times over to see it again. I have admired the English monarchy since I was a child--after all, like English children I was raised on Shakespeare and Austen and Dickens and Tennyson. I think, however, that there is a considerable amount of awkwardness about the way we Americans sit here and gaze across the Atlantic pond at the place and the people that make all the legends and the literature seem so real to us. After all, my people have been Americans for at least four generations now and oh dear how we do love our country. We take pride in our independence, in our kingless-ness, in our blessed simplicity.

And yet. And yet we still find ourselves watching the pomp, the traditions, the heraldry across the water and see a picture of something beautiful--something to look up to in respect, and dare I say it; something to remind us of our great King, Jesus Christ and His eternal, glorious reign. Our Lord is a King, not a president. He has taken upon Himself the care and protection and ultimate salvation of His people. He is greater than King Arthur, greater than any of the Edwards, Henrys or Georges. And when we pray, we are like those adoring people outside the gates of Buckingham palace (except incomprhensibly the gates have been opened to us), eyes fixed on the crimson draped balcony, but looking not at the symbols of our King, but at our King Himself. And He is like, but infinitely better than those royals on that balcony, looking down in love and favor on their people. Because where they are living lamp posts, He is the living sun.

Monday, April 25, 2011

The fire burns, the pages turn.

Today I began the dusty business of packing up my humble belongings. I will be moving to my new home officially on Saturday, but the real work has already started and no doubt will continue all week. This move, as opposed to my last one which took me a distance of three thousand miles from the place of my childhood, is a mere thirty miles--an easy drive for my intrepid Honda, Henry. And yet this move as much as the last, represents the end of an era, the closing of a chapter, the relentless passing of time. I am not afraid. But I am sad.

As I rummaged through the inevitable accumulation of odd things in my drawers and steadily deconstructed my bedroom I could not quite banish the tightness in my chest, the quiet ache in my stomach. I am leaving the place that has been to me a safe harbor, a house of refuge. Here I have found hope when there was only despair, and light when there was only darkness. Here I have been loved.

I realize that it is more than a little silly for me to be sad today. After all, people who love me are close, I have work, a new home, hope for the future. I have all this and more. So I will soon banish the sadness from my heart. But it will have its say--it always does.

As for the people who love me, can my words possibly express them, honor them enough? They have been a true brother, a true sister to me. They have planted me, watered me, shined on me, and waited patiently for the light in my eyes, for the strength in my limbs to return. They have lifted me up with their confidence, and more than anything, they have lifted my face to see God's face shining down on me with such unspeakable love that I can hardly say what I must say without weeping.

Even now as I consider the life I have lived for the past twenty months, and the life I lived all the years before, I cannot understand how I survived without knowing what I know now: that I am loved. I am LOVED. And by the God who spoke light into existence, who governs the entire universe and any worlds beyond, who weeps for me, who is enraged with the cause of all my suffering, who died to right all wrongs, and who rose again to slay death like the foul beast it is.

I will drink deeply the love of my Lord tonight, and I will be at peace.

Pictures of a February sunset at the Oceanside pier in San Diego, California.