I doubt it was her first ice cream cone because she seemed to know what to do.
But it was her first ice cream cone with us.
One summer Sunday evening.
A moment captured through the lens of love.
Imprinted in memory and stamped on our hearts.
A delicious dive into delight.
We walked down the street with her between us clutching our index fingers.
And then she wrenched away to spin in circles until I thought she might do a face plant on cement.
Hands on bent knees, she woofed back at unseen dogs.
She pointed skyward at the invisible.
She danced in grassy yards and gravelly driveways.
She ooooh’ed and ahhhh’d at the insignificant.
She soaked it all in.
And so did we.
“What are you looking forward to?” Pastor Bill asked that morning.
I thought of settling in to watch the Tigers play–and win (they lost.)
I thought of next week’s trip to the upper peninsula and the ACFW conference next month.
I thought of a house finally in total repair and perfectly decorated.
I thought of a completed book.
Published maybe even.
And then he reminded us that most of what we look forward to is just a fleck of time.
Like a mosquito we flick off our arm.
And that every now experience is new.
Every ice cream cone is new.
Because every moment is new and different.
And then gone.
We’re so intent on the future, we don’t open our ears to the silence.
We don’t open our eyes to the unseen.
We don’t gasp at and grasp each wonder-drenched day.
We don’t savor each God-dipped, joy-dripped moment.
We don’t step aside to investigate the flames.
Our divided hearts cling to the fingers of the comfortable.
And though He’s relentless for us, we’re not reckless for Him.
We crave the comfortable and hope in the temporal while we claim surrendered lives.
But God doesn’t call us to be comfortable. He calls us to trust Him so completely that we are unafraid to put ourselves in situations where we will be in trouble if He doesn’t come through. ~Francis Chan in Crazy Love
Bill asks (and so does Francis), “What are you doing right now that requires faith?”
My answer is “not much.”
But I’m learning to wallow in the glory.
And the melting moments.
Maybe that’s a start.
Okay, so maybe spilling my words in public and attempting to write fiction with no promises take faith, but it seems so tiny in comparison to those in the hall of faith (Hebrews 11.)
But then Francis asks, “How would my life change if I actually thought of each person I came into contact with as Christ–the person driving painfully slow in front of me, the checker at the grocery store who seems more interested in chatting than ringing up my items, the member of my own family with whom I can’t seem to have a conversation and not get annoyed?”
That’s everyday faith stuff.
And I have some work to do there.
Question: What are you doing that requires faith?
In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is destroys that life. But if you let it go, reckless in your love, you’ll have it forever, real and eternal. ~John 12:25 Message)