Sunday after church I pulled up to Chad’s house, then headed around to the backporch. I love porches. Cozy, their dog, welcomed me. I love that dog. He wears his name well, unless you’re a squirrel.
Chad fixed brunch for me, since they’d already eaten. Meanwhile, Maggie packed for camp and the others returned to matters at hand. So I climbed upstairs to their music loft to play the piano awhile. It was the piano I grew up with. Soon, Poco came up and stood beside me. While I played, she sang words to songs I sing to her when she comes for sleepovers.
It felt sacred. I love her voice, but better still, her presence. Somehow hearing, “He’s got the whole world in His hands” felt reassuring, connecting generations. Precious Poco. Kindness thrives deep in her DNA. Mind you, she’s tough, but not mean. Strong.
As I age in place, I’m grateful for the gift of proXimity. I cherish the closeness, nearby relationships with family, friends and neighbors. And then, my usual stores, doctors, church and the seasons. The familiar helps balance the fragility and unpredictability of life in a country and world divided and wary.
After making music together, we made-up words to a familiar tune. We sang of making rootbeer floats and watching movies together. Doesn’t sound very holy, but they were sacred times and are. After awhile, I headed towards the stairs. Time to go home. When I reached the railing, Poco took my other hand. I said, “I like that, Poco. I used to hold your hand to be sure you were safe. Now, you’re holding mine. Thank you.”
ProXimity. Choosing to say close. The X factor.
To be sure, we need more hand holding and less hand wringing. But fears abound.
So often at night, I recite, “So do not fear for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, and help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. (Isaiah 41:10, NIV)
God’s hands uphold us. And it’s more than lyrics when we sing, “He’s got the whole world in his hands.” No matter how it looks or feels.
But sometimes, we need skin on skin. And Sunday God showed up through a Grand who took my old hand in hers and said without words, “We can do this.”
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