On Tuesday we went to the lake. We almost didn’t make it.
As is the usual pattern for Tuesday’s at the Dale, (I am slowly learning) the weather is uncertain and indecisive at best. We had planned for weeks to go to the lake on Tuesday to celebrate the beginning of summer. We would have hot dogs and chips, and have a picnic on the benches. Foolish, knowing how Mother Nature feels about Tuesday’s? Maybe. But we like to hope for the best. On the day in question, the clouds came and went, as did the rain. It was on and off for so long in the morning that we had decided to surrender to the weather and postpone our picnic and meet at our usual indoor spot.
Our friends had other plans. Once word got out that we had waived the flag of defeat, we were coaxed by our friends into hope and belief that the storm would hold. And that it did. With last minute pizza in hand, we went to the lake with community in tow and sat together. We ate pizza from the box, and salad and fruit that was generously brought by our friends. We laughed together, discussed the ever flooding lake, watched the rowers go by, and took silly pictures together.
Earlier that day as a team we visited a friend in the hospital. I stepped back and watched as Erinn and Jo touched the hand of our friend and prayed for her. It was sad. I felt sad. I thought of many of my other friends who had become ill. Some still here, and some gone to be with their maker. This work is hard. We value being in community with one another, and not just on good days. On days when we feel hurt, helpless, hopeless, angry, sad, broken. On those days we are still together.
That Tuesday was bitter sweet. We saw brokenness – our strong, resilient friend in the hospital, the only thing to be done was to touch her hand and pray. But we saw hope that day too. Hope for clouds to clear and the sun to come out. Hope in community and how it encourages and brings joy when we feel like we walk in defeat. We saw laughter and sweet moments of friendship.
Erinn, Jo, and I put our arms around each other and looked at our friends around the table, laughing together. This is our crew, and we are glad. On days that this feels sad and hard and hopeless, let us look to each other and to the One that brought us together for joy, hope, and healing.
On Tuesday we went to the lake. With stumbling steps and a grace that is ever true, we made it.