Friday, July 29, 2011

Stretched


I tap the last few granules of sugar into my morning cup of tea. I search for a pen that will actually write to add one more item to my grocery list—sugar. Wait, make that two—sugar and a pen that actually writes.

The ratty grocery budget envelope holds just one bill that is supposed to last the rest of this long month. Its four zeroes after the 2 are deceiving. The 20,000 rupiah bill is worth less than $3 and certainly won’t cover the now 46-item grocery list.

I drink, hoping the caffeine will waken my ratty mind filled with too many weary thoughts that are deceiving, too. They are more worries than lists, more doubts than hopes. I drink, tired from another night caring for a sick child after nights of caring for a teething baby after nights of caring for a nursing infant after nights carrying an unborn daughter.

I wander the yard, pouring water into plants thirsty from the dry season. I know I should drink in the morning blue sky which usually makes me feel like a kid on summer break. In a few hours, the sun will burn hot and wilt away any urges to skip. But I water quickly, hurrying before the sick child wakes and before the child who is already awake finishes her breakfast. Motherhood is a world both energizing and draining. It keeps me young, but stretches me old. I

n the few remaining minutes of calm, I open the Book of truth and try to read, though, my mind is focused on lists and plans and worries. Distracted, I flip through the scribbled messy month of plans, budgets, responsibilities, needs, wants in my day planner. I worry how it will all fit, each day looking ratty in my notebook and full of zeroes that don’t stretch far enough.

These plans of mine are me—stretched—wanting so much, needing many things, held in a sweaty, worn-out old envelope or planner or body.

I turn away and smooth out the other pages open before me. The pages that give more than I ever ask. The love that fills, even when it empties into others through me. The words that overflow with blessings not limited by budgets or plans or human ability or hours in a day.

I drink in the promises that I know. The ones that I live today. The ones that I will someday see.

“His divine power has given us everything we need for life…”

“And the God of all grace…will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.”

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

I sip my tea sweetened with sugar my Father saved me, drinking in hope under an endless sunny sky. A baby cries and a boy coughs and I return to life, filled with a love that stretches farther than the eye can see.

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