It’s a Sunday afternoon and I am sitting on the couch, feet curled up under me and a cat by my side. The decorated Christmas tree with its lights twinkling and ornaments shiny is in front of me, soft Christmas music in the back ground. I chuckle inside – my life is never like a magazine….but this feels magazine-like. (Other than the fact that my family thinks that anything less than 25 books on a coffee table is a sin….)
I have a few minutes of quiet. Tonight will bring a crowd to our house with our annual Christmas open-house, but right now it’s quiet and I love it. In the quiet I think about the past weeks since I returned from Turkey. It has been a rush of activity at home and work. There has been little time to reflect and remember.
But right here, right now — I reflect and remember. I remember a year ago and some of my worries, how now they are resolved and no longer burdens to me, no longer heavy backpacks on my journey. I remember some of the uncertainty of last year, now no longer uncertain. I think of the growth that has taken place in myself and those around me. And I think of the pain mixed with joy — always present, simply a part of living in our broken world.
It’s good to remember. I’ve said it many times in my blog; I echo it in my book. This season, before New Year’s comes with it’s bang and pop, take a few minutes to remember. Write down what worried you a year ago and see if today it might feel a fraction easier. To be sure there are new worries, but if we look the way of the past we see grace woven through the journey.
So I sit by a beautiful tree, grateful for a few moments to reflect and remember. Because there can be strength in remembering.
“But first, remember,remember, remember the signs. Say them to yourself when you wake in the morning and when you lie down at night, and when you wake in the middle of the night. And whatever strange things may happen to you, let nothing turn your mind from following the signs. And secondly, I give you a warning. Here on the mountain I have spoken to you clearly: I will not often do so down in Narnia. Here on the mountain. the air is clear and your mind is clear; as you drop down into Narnia, the air will thicken. Take great care that it does not confuse your mind. And the sign which you have learned here will not look at all as you expect them to look, when you meet them there. That is why it is so important to know them by heart and pay not attention to appearances. Remember the signs and believe the signs. Nothing else matters.” CS Lewis in The Silver Chair from the Chronicles of Narnia Series
Buy Between Worlds. Between Worlds, Essays on Culture and Belonging a set of essays on living between worlds today. The book is divided into 7 sections and each section is illustrated by my talented daughter – Annie Gardner. Home, Identity, Belonging, Airports, Grief & Loss, Culture Clash, and Goodbyes set the stage for the individual essays within each section.