Sunday, April 08, 2007

A different Easter lesson

the womanchild had planned a very special Easter present for me. She asked for the day off from her waitress's job at a local Chinese buffet restaurant. She works hard there, and she's learned the lessons I'd hoped she would. Having to deal with rude, impatient people who just don't get it has made her kinder and more understanding to others. She knows how hard she works to earn her pay and the capriciousness of even a good and kind boss. Her already thrifty habits are soaring to a new level. She's also more appreciative of when someone buys her something. She likes being dependable and knowing that people can count on her, so taking off one of the busiest dining days of the year was a big deal.

She did this so we could go to church together. Getting her to work on time on Sunday has meant that I've had to skip our usual church services. She knows I've missed them. She knows I miss her going to church with me. She's best described as a spiritual seeker right now, unsure of what she believes, repelled by some of the antics of the more media noted churches and Christian celebrities, confused as to how and why God/dess could let Jesus die as he did, unsure as to the possibility of resurrection. She knows she loves our church, and that the people there love her. She knows this love is truly Divine. She's felt the truth of that, but the path that makes sense to her hasn't emerged from the confusion. Today isn't the celebration for her that it is for me, yet she wanted to give her time to let me join with my brothers and sisters in joy and hope. She wanted to share in that herself.

A tearful teenage breakup last night changed this. She initiated it. Her boyfriend left here crying late last night, and she spent the rest of the night worrying over him. He wouldn't answer his phone. He hadn't gone home. This morning, when she finally reached him, he had driven about five hours away, just driving to run away from his pain. My heart breaks for them both, especially since I've seen this as inevitable the whole time they've been dating. For my daughter, this is the end of her first love. Whatever her future holds, this time with him and this breakup will always be a part of her, though other relationships may fade into one of the mind's oubliettes. For him, I just hope so many good things, even knowing the womanchild won't be part of them.

Being poised in the limbo of separation myself, neither really married nor really single, I find myself feeling grateful that I'm no longer in a place where I'm counting on human love. I'm grateful for both its present form in my life and for the memories of how it used to be. I'm glad it's not my raison d'etre.

I meant to worship today, to observe rituals, to break bread and sip wine in a joining with God/dess and the whole of the body of Christ. I'd hoped for a quiet, still, trembling moment of transcendence, but the messiness of human life interfered once again. Despite this, I find myself quiet and still nonetheless, humbled by a love not bent by human frailty, so grateful for it even though after a lifetime of study, prayer and experience, I can't even pretend to understand it in more than bits and pieces. I'd thrill to be able to process God/dess and the meaning of the Divine logically in my life. I can't though. I just know without knowing. It would probably be more accurate to say that I am known and still cherished...and will be cherished. There can be no breakup here. I neither cannot sever this bond.

I have been claimed by the ultimate love. Despite human illnesses, depression, job frustrations, the sense that my mission is still out there waiting for me to identify it and jump in, my wildly demanding emotions from the whole range of human feeling, I know that I'm a different person because of Christ in my life. There is always something more, something greater than this world, the people in it, and the daily experiences of an ordinary life around me and inside me. I am more than I was and less than I will be. This isn't what I expected from Easter this year. This ancient tradition still holds the power to be different and surprising as being made new reveals itself in an unexpected way.

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Blogger Lisa :-] said...

How this differs from MY Easter post... :)

What I believe or don't believe does not and should not make any difference to what anyone else does. Whatever has meaning for you is the path you should follow. I will always honor and respect that.

April 10, 2007 12:42 AM  

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