To Feel the Rain


IMG_7030First, it is the sound that breaks through the music. A weather alert. A “special weather statement.” The clouds overhead and the gray sky comes into vision. A storm is coming.

I continue on the run but adjust the distance. I veer to the left and then up into the trails. Running around the golf course, I feel akin to the golf player. Before too long, they and I will be engulfed in the reality surrounding us. The clouds will no longer be able to hold it in and down it will come.

First they are droplets. Covered by the trees, it is not my arms that feel it first, rather my ears take in the sounds. Pitter patter along the ivy that surrounds, the wild plants that roam, the leaves overhead.

Rounding the corner, the trail runs parallel to the interstate in the valley cut-out amidst the park. The cars receive the droplets while the drivers drown out nature’s music with their own choices of soundtrack. Over the secret bridge, I arrive back on the other side and I am closer to home.

The rain droplets grow. In size. In weight. In intensity.

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On the treadmill, I set the time and increase the pace. Music pumps in my ears as I propel my legs on the machine to keep up with its demands. I push my boundaries and test this body of mine. I measure its output and assess its progress in preparation for the half-marathon in April.

Weight-lifters bend and stretch and grunt in front of mirrors. Trainers roam with their clients. People everywhere are trying to care for the bodies they’ve been given. Some work with desire to change it, to tweak it, to reach after some satisfaction. Some work with the desire to recover, to return to health, to make their tired bodies work another day. Some are living to make it work and some are making it work to live. The irony abounds as we stand next to one another on the treadmill. Continue reading

HOLY SATURDAY: For today, there is Life.


photoWhile the sun still sleeps and darkness hangs out, I gather my things. Race bib, shoes, headphones. I review the logistics in my head. Many steps stand between me and my first half-marathon.

My mind wanders to the sanctuary, where we sat last night in darkness at the end of our Tenebrae service. A service of shadows. A service of death. Black fabric still drapes the communion table and pulpit. As the birds began their day’s song, I know that the darkness sits in silence even now.

The complex theological questions of Good Friday swirl in my head (where was Jesus’ father, Joseph, while Mary wailed? Where was Jesus’ father, the Holy One, while love and sorrow flowed mingled down?). Yesterday the questions seemed important to think through. Today, they seem rhetorical. On the silence of Holy Saturday, faith is not about understanding the mystery. It is about communion with the mystery. Continue reading

I will trust. I will rest and I will be free.


One foot in front of the other, I ran.  Music setting my pace, energy burst within me as I left behind a house with sleeping boys and a husband on-call but finally at home.  The sun was blinding as it began its descent. Stepping over roots on the trail, I launched forward.

With each step, I unwound from the day.  Saturdays used to mean sleeping late and trips out to breakfast.  They meant home projects and time on the couch.  Now with two young boys and a husband in orthopedic residency, Saturdays often mean rising early, changing diapers, negotiating screen time, cutting peels off of apples, and reaching the limits of my patience. Continue reading