I had a delightful day yesterday, although it didn't proceed the way that I thought it might. At one point, I wrote this Facebook post: "Should I be doing something different to get ready for this week's accreditation visit? On this rainy Sunday afternoon, all I really want to do is read Henri Nouwen's South American journal and Barbara Brown Taylor's "Learning to Walk in the Dark." Perhaps that's the best way to prepare?"
And that, dear readers, is exactly what I did. I felt fortunate to have a roof over my head that wasn't leaking in yesterday's heavy rains and a front porch deep enough where we could sit and watch the rain.
Early in the day, I thought about not going to church--my spouse and I are both in that end of the term period where we just feel overwhelmed with work left to do--and then he starts a job at a new school, which requires onboarding, and I, of course, have the accreditation visit.
But we did go, and it was good, both in terms of spirituality and in terms of being needed, since some of our members were on retreat and others had trouble getting to church because of the severe weather. I helped as assistant minister, and my spouse sang a wonderful solo during "Wade in the Water." We counted money after church.
And then we made our way home through flooding rains. Luckily, our house was OK, and our other car hadn't been submerged. We made a pot of chili and ate our linner (lunch/dinner) on the porch. And although I knew I should be grading, I decided that I'd rather get up early this morning, which I did, and enjoy yesterday afternoon, which I did.
My spouse graded his papers on the porch, but I decided to read. I finished Nouwen's journal, which was interesting but didn't speak to me the way I thought it might when I dipped in and out of it on Good Friday. I finished Learning to Walk in the Dark in one fell swoop; I had read it before, and it's relatively short and an easy read.
Both books both did and did not speak to me at this point in my life. I feel like I am walking in the dark, in a time of great political uncertainty (like Nouwen's time when he wrote the journal in the early 80's). How would I have wanted the books to be different?
Taylor's book explored darkness in a more literal way, which was interesting, but not the book of coping strategies I might have preferred. I found Nouwen's various lack of connections from the South American communities to be more fascinating than the political situation, but he doesn't spend as much time exploring that.
Still, it was a great way to spend a rainy Sunday. And now it's on to the week ahead. I'm ready to see what happens!
feeling the feelings…
4 months ago