10 April 2014

it's been a while...and hope

Five and a half months, to be exact.  I last posted 10 days before leaving South Sudan.

my oh my. all that's happened since then!  it simultaneously seems like eons ago and like yesterday.  How is it that time does that...or that memory does that to time...?
6100 block of Washington ~ 2 weeks ago

Here in St. Louis, the crocuses and daffodils are poking their heads up, some already in bloom, along with the forsythia and the buds on all kinds of flowering trees lining the streets.  

Four Corners @ Des Peres & Kingsbury this morning
It's a season of hope.  In Mundri, the season of hope looks like this:

One word.  mangoes.  Just waiting to turn a hint of yellow and be knocked from the tree by hungry young hands with sticks and rocks...a dry season provision from the Lord in a time when other crops/food are scarce...the confidence in and anticipation of this turning from green to yellow, from tart to sweet, from firm to tender is such a tangible hope.

The current season of my heart is in a daily, hourly, battle for such hope as these.  My dad requested prayer from our church community last night in a congregational prayer meeting, and in his words "the Fall is overshadowing the Gospel."  Ditto.  The Gospel has shown it's Face in remarkably tangible glimpses...and to those I fight to cling.

Day by day my mom's body is breaking down in front of my very eyes.  Whatever God has for us in this...whatever wretched exercise in Hope or Faith or God knows what else - it is not for the faint hearted...and I feel faint hearted.  Then I hear the opening of Psalm 46...

[Heidi, I am y]our refuge and strength,

    a very present help in trouble.
Therefore you will not fear though the earth gives way,
    though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam,
    though the mountains tremble at its swelling.
To leave Mundri for this valley, it all feels a bit like the earth is giving way...that the mountains might just be moved into the sea...in the least the waters are roaring and the mountains are trembling...

Refuge and strength.  Refuge and strength.  Refuge.  Strength.