It's been a good season. The kids—and grandson- and the one on the way- are healthy—our work is getting out in the world. Our youngest son is stepping into his acting career with a bit of style and good graces. Serendipity is one way of putting it—events and people winding around to meet him and offer him new doors in which to make a grand entrance. He’s always had an abundance of confidence and a sense of destiny—so far it seems he was right. When he was a toddler he told stories about how he and Jesus hung out in heaven before he was born arranging this family and plotting his path. Having lived longer than he, I hope he always remembers these moments of grace when life throws up the inevitable obstacles.
Over the years I have discovered that getting through tough times—times of struggle and doubt and pain—that the act of remembering the good seasons, the abundance and blessings, joys, laughter, just plain peace and contentment, can act as a lifeline to hang onto when we feel battered. There comes a point, or several, when we understand the De Profundis Psalm 130: Out of the depths I cry to you o Lord. Lord, hear my prayer.
Sometimes, though, when things are going well, blessedly, even, there is a small warning, a caution, to not get too excited or expectant, because you just never know when the crash will come. The great equalizer.
But, geez, what kind of a grouch can dip into that pool of emotion every time life is good? That seems rather ungrateful doesn’t it?
I do it all the time. It’s an insurance against feeling too good, too confident. Yesterday, when I had planned to get this post out, I had a roller-coaster day. The morning sent me several e-mails from readers who (dare I say it?) loved my short story in The Rose and Thorn Journal.
Now everyone loves praise, but, years of training against being “too big for your britches” kicks in and some imp pokes my confidence and warns me to just wait, something bad will come and you’ll be back to where you started.
I had one of those events handy—I couldn’t reach one of my sons. Didn’t, couldn’t, wouldn’t, answer his phone. He was always so good, so prompt, at returning calls. So naturally, gearing up for disaster since I’d just been blessed with good tidings and praise, I pictured him on the side of the road, upside down in his car and unconscious. So I couldn’t write. I couldn’t eat. I could only worry. Now that is something I know I’m good at.
I’ve got to get a new hobby.