I have spent much of the last couple of years adjusting to a new life here in Portland, Oregon. Although it was my childhood town, I had been away for over seven years pursuing the last part of my BA and then my MA at seminary in Seattle. The majority of my time back home was devoted to caring for my dear father as he prepared to pass from life to Life. That transition happened this summer, the day before my birthday. We have just passed three months since he died.
In the time since his passing, I often felt much like the walking dead. No purpose. No dream. No hope for the future. All was simply numb. These effects of shock - which is our normal human response to the trauma of death - has only in recent weeks begun to dissipate. My brain and emotions, it seemed, were in a cryogenic state - frozen in time at my Daddy's death bed. Both have begun to thaw. The time of healing has now begun.
For those of you who may be experiencing the loss of a loved one, or the deep shadows of grief as you care for an ailing parent or sibling, I write to offer you companionship. New life, I am convinced, can be found when we tend one another's hearts. I am here to walk beside you, accepting you with your permafrost brain, erratic emotional swings and physical aches that are a manifestation of your grief. We will get through this together. We will learn to live again.
"I have come that you might have life and have it to the fullest measure." -- Jesus says.
We have a promise from the Living Christ that new life is coming. I am convinced that this is a deep, cosmological truth. All life, from the smallest fruit fly to the greatest mammoth and basilosaurus, and everything in between, will all find newness and resurrection in the time to come. For now, I am thankful to be receiving a small preview of this new life with the slow, gentle resurrection in my frozen grief brain.
I will do my best to write here once a week, both to walk with you and to record my own journey of resurrection.
|Photo by Trista Wynne - Zombie 5K -- Dayton, OR -- October 2013|