summer? summer has mosquito's and too much heat - and it's far too removed from winter. i start forgetting the mittens and boots, the layers of clothing, hunching into myself as i battle the elements with my shopping cart, carving a path through the snow...but here, now, i remember. even as i feel the heat on my arms, as my sunglasses slide down my nose, i remember. which makes the experience infinitely better than summer.
i am currently sitting at my patio table, looking out over my back lawn that seems to turn a shade greener from dead brown to luscious olive - and maybe even phthalo? - each day. i would post pictures of the budding surprises from my flower bed, but i'm afraid you on the west coast would laugh at it's small beginnings - and i don't think my garden's fragile feelings could handle it. but i will say, i see a yellow pansy, some new red leaves, and something pink about to poke through. my kids are always asking me to choose a favourite colour, and i cannot. but, perhaps today, it is green.
i've been meditating on a verse this past week. scott handed me a lovely leather liturgy* (alliteration always amplifies!) that, along with daily readings and the usual prayers, encourages lectio divina and has me focus on one verse throughout the week. so, last week it was from John 11:25-26:
"I am the resurrection and the life. anyone who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. do you believe this?"
i know, i've heard it before as well. but this is what struck me recently - the word "by". "whoever lives by believing in me will never die." it made me think that there are two faiths. one that believes in Jesus as God, a belief that leads to eternal life. and one that takes that belief and sinks it down deep, as the center of decisions and motivations and desires, as the reason for life. if all i do in this world is an outpouring of my belief in Christ, then death is just an extension of that life - it's just the next day, the next step, the final release of control and fear.
so, my next question is, do i live this way? what would it look like if i did?
i'll let you in on the answer: i don't think i do. and my reason for this is that death still scares me. sometimes i feel like i'm just waiting for the diagnosis. biding time. my back's been killing me these past few days, and it hasn't felt like i've just thrown my back out. it's felt deeper, and i've been thinking about kidney infection or cancer. i know, it's a bit of a jump. but with cancer so rampant, some days it seems inevitable, and the question isn't "if" but "when". i really enjoy getting x-rays or ultrasounds because the vast unknown of the inner workings of my body seriously scares me. every time i get a peak inside it's a sigh of relief. does anyone else feel like this? am i completely paranoid? don't tell me if i am, it will freak me out.
so, no, i don't feel like i am living "by believing" because i think that if i did i would let go of fear completely, and trust wholistically, and care about others much more because i'm not wasting so much time caring about myself. but, it's a good life direction and end goal, don't you think?
this entry is getting long, but i would be amiss if i did not include some pics from my sons lego party we had on the weekend. why would i be amiss? because i want your praise. there, that's the truth of the matter.
sometimes i feel like i go way overboard with my kids parties, and then i look at some other blogs and realize my $50 budget and personal time spent is actually quite tame! isn't the internet great for revealing how crazy other people are compared to you? so, here's my lego head marshmellow pops, and my robot magnet craft and my cupcakes.
*Reinders, Philip F. Seeking God's Face: Praying with the Bible through the Year. Michigan: Baker Books, 2005.