I know people who have chosen their new car based on the number and location of the cup holders. The first time I saw HH I was really attracted to the way he wore a white button-down shirt. In my first post-seminary home, I remember loving the staircase railing.
For our newest home, it was the window. I walked into an empty apartment and saw the window and immediately imagined our Christmas tree there. It would be a good place for Spense to watch other dogs and their people on the sidewalk below. It would be a great place to sit and begin the morning with our first cups of coffee.
Something random yet particular often draws us in.
Today is Ash Wednesday and there are already many comments out there about how we’ve been in a season of Lent since mid-March 2020. Do we really need to consider that “to dust we will return” when it’s felt dusty for 12 months now? Isolation has a way of forcing us to think about things we would otherwise be too busy to ponder.
But here’s my thinking: if you are a person of faith, something drew you to God once upon a time. Maybe you were in trouble and there was nobody else to help. Maybe someone you love was in trouble and you cried out on their behalf. Maybe something was so profoundly beautiful that you knew there was a Divine Creator.
What first drew you to God?
Was it fear? Family ties? Ineffable joy? Pain? I was introduced to God by my parents and extended family in the Church. I was drawn to God because of loneliness and pain.
Lent is a lonely time and the pandemic has made the world lonelier and more isolating, so yes, it feels like we’ve been in a season of Lent for the last twelve months. And yet it’s also a time when we strive to be more attuned to where God is all around us. This is how we are moved spiritually.
I see a lovely window and imagine what that window offers. I see a handsome man in a white button-down and he seemed interesting. (Handsome Man became Handsome Husband – HH.) I could imagine walking down the staircase in my first manse to welcome guests at the front door.
The pandemic cannot take away our imagination. Everyday there is something ordinary that can lead to extraordinary moments. A window, a shirt, a staircase.
Today may God remind us that we are indeed dust and to dust we will return. And there is beauty in the dust and the light and the wind and the noise and the quiet.
Image of the window in our dining room overlooking the world outside our doors.