More than enough. It’s been the thought on my mind all day, where a deep sense of longing and loss have met with gentle acceptance and a swell of real, tangible hope. It feels like my eyes have been opened by the brilliant last of the day rays of sunshine that have finally broken through the cloud filled sky. Today, I have witnessed a family healing in our unity, a peace amongst us now that the pressure of life has lessened. We’re going to be okay. More than enough. God keeps whispering more than enough.
Bri and I went for lattes this afternoon. We drove through the park. There was an aged woman walking in the road, her back bent, house slippers shuffling along the roadbed. She wore a house dress like my grandmother once had covered by a dirty red coat. Her unbrushed, greyed hair hung in her face as she shuffled, unseeingly, towards the state highway that is the main street of my small home town. She turned right from the park road onto the sidewalk, where she was intercepted by someone like me ~ a person that was concerned. I am not sure if they were family or neighbor, maybe just someone from our town. Brian and I were starting to turn and check on her. I remember at moments like this that this is why I love my hometown, including my old house, sitting in the midst of an acre of trees. I love all of it’s problems, and the local gossip chain, meeting friends as you go for coffee and hearing all the latest at the Wal-Mart checkout. For those of you who cringe at Wal-Mart, Meijer is in Anderson, 45 miles away. That requires more energy than I have today.
I mention the woman because I feel like people don’t see the lost people who are on the margins very often. So easy for some of our most vulnerable sisters and brothers to become lost in larger populaces, where everyone is in a hurry. It’s harder not to notice the people who are without food or shelter in a place that is like Rushville…it’s hard not to see the lives that we all live in such close proximity, even though there is lots more room between our houses than the average bear. My particular three story pile of red bricks really does sit on a acre in the middle of town, and I wouldn’t trade the view from my office or porch for a hut in Bora Bora. It’s important to have roots that will last a lifetime when you’ve lived a lifetime in chaos. There is a sense of more than enough, peace, wellness about this all that pervades my soul.
More than enough. When you live in a small town, you’re either here for a reason like family ties that go back a hundred years, or it fulfills a need. For me, it is the latter. Having grown up in a trailer in the poor south east Oklahoma landscape, a place like Rushville is like Eden to me. Here, the children ride their bikes and play at the park without fear. Here, the police really do have to respond to missing cats, as well as arguments and big city stuff like the occasional drug bust. Here, there is also the lack of jobs that pervades our nations rural economies, and a sense of hopelessness for those teens that don’t head off to college. Our number one export? Bright young minds that don’t return after graduation from a college of choice. And corn…lots of corn. This is the place where your kids go through school with the same set of friends, form life long bonds and have a community that supports them. Not a lot of troubled kids here, considering the national averages. It’s like living in the suspended 1950’s, flowers everywhere, parades for no reason. Yes, the economy is taking it’s toll on the small business owners, including yours truly who once owned a great restaurant here.
More than enough. Rush County to me is like no place on earth. I’ve never really belonged anywhere until here, never had any deep roots that I felt a connection to. When you walk into my house, it’s a whole different era. It’s the safest, most beautiful place that I know. The plumbing and electrical are both outdated, considering the house is almost 160 years old and I’m pretty sure that the original electrical work is hanging around from the thirties. The fireplaces, all seven of them, double as a great place to eject expensive heat. I love the fifteen foot ceilings, but have you ever tried to keep cobwebs off stuff that high? When all the kids are home, it’s a mad house…and when they’re all gone, it’s tranquil. With foot and a half thick walls, not much wins in the house vs. anything contest. It’s got attitude, my house, and a deep love of faith. Nothing exists this long without coming alive.
More than enough. Home is surrounded by the most beautiful trees. One is nearly six feet across at the base, not sure about diameter. The poor summer porch deserves a rebuild this year, and this morning we spent hours pruning and loving the trees. Taryn and I hauled so many branches out for the city to mulch that a small forest is now laying in the front just past the sidewalk. Come Monday, it’s destined for the wood chipper. Life in this small town is often idyllic, although if you’re not in love with it’s strange culture…you’ll really be unhappy. I love the people here, the ones that are more than able to stop and care for an aged woman on the street. I love the way that you smile and wave, and that people care that you’re here and well.
More than enough. Today has been another one of those nearly perfect days, where we have played together with great joy, still doing the yard work and dog piling on the couch for movie time. We woke late and had a morning of talking and laughing before we ever rose – I love my curtains from India from my beloved Dawn; it’s always night in my bedroom. This is the first weekend of no plans – no school, no wedding, no house full of visitors like it’s been for over a month now. There have been so many people in my house that it’s crazy messy. I lit my new batch of hand made incense, and had time of meditation while Bri started his day. We spent the whole Saturday as a family. It’s amazing to talk with him about faith and laugh over the days gone by, talk about his golf game (to wet to play) and watch some of NASCARs Dover’s race before it rained out too. He’s headed to play Sawgrass in Jacksonville while we’re there for a week in July, a blissful reunion with my soul sister and her family, a week at the beach and the possibility of viewing the last space shuttle takeoff.
More than enough. I keep hearing it as a prayer of thanks in my head, knowing that God is standing here with me, and all of my devotion is place solely on the faith of the Divine promise. God is more than enough. I’ve seen it in every moment of today, from our community over a late brunch at Denny’s to the newly planted fields as we drove home. We watched “My Sisters Keeper” and cried for those moments we remember with Taryn’s birth and those to come in mine, Brian’s. More than enough. Life is so very, very precious.
I’ve asked myself today in what ways I have served God. I’m not your normal pastor, and I realize readily that I am called to something much different than most who serve. I am good with that as I sit here on my office couch with my little blond daughter asleep on my shoulder. I’m upfront and honest with God about who and what I am, and I am more than enough…I’ve been made more than enough. It’s taken the hard times, the good times and everything in between to get to this place. I have had to learn the hard way about codependent behavior, detachment, love, loss, faith in the storm, being fully present and saying both yes and no. I’ve learned about self care, and how not to always be the person that stops and helps, allowing others to meet their own destiny. I’ve learned to stop trying to save the people that I love the most from their own consequences, and to ask for help when I normally would not have. I have learned to live outside of the chaos, the hurricane…and I wish that knowledge for you. I’m lighting an incense for the woman in the red coat, and will keep my eyes open.
Are you more than enough? Before count yourself out, before you listen to the voices in your head that beat you up, hear that all may not be as it seems. You are worthwhile, unique and the only person that can be you. Don’t let labels and definitions from the past or even the present cloud your way. You’re not a victim, a mistake, a creature of chance…you’re everything that is possible. Your more than enough may only be one smile away, if you’d only let go of the bar your holding onto so tightly…you’ll find that the ground is only a few inches under your feet. Open your eyes before your life passes you by; do not let your past dictate your future. Experience the margins, the dream, the passion and the reality of life, and life more abundantly. Will that mean that you have everything financially? No. Stuff is useless, if you want to know the truth. I appreciate my house, but I would give it up for the ones that I love. I appreciate my education, my health, all of it…but the main thing will always be the main thing.
I pray for you the love that fills my heart today, the knowing that you’re precious.
More than enough.