Yesterday my husband ( :) ) and I had a lunch date in the “coffee bar” at my work.
It’s not an actual coffee bar, mind you. They don’t lock baristas in the closet at night. It’s just a room in the church that has a few couches, bistro tables, coffee makers and large quantities of Folgers scooped up from Sam’s Club.
Still, sometimes, it has donuts leftover from the Sunday School class that meets there. Needless to say, I like the coffee bar.
Monday was a long morning (and there were no donuts). Thankfully, my Hubby joined me for my lunch break, and with him he brought a toasted sandwich, sour cream and onion chips, and a breath of fresh air.
Since we’re ridiculously fast eaters, we were able to make a sweet tea run after eating.
And when we got back to the office I still had 30 minutes of lunch break left. SCORE!
So, instead of rushing back inside, back to the daily grind, we seized the opportunity to enjoy the sunshine and headed to the swing set out back.
Right away I went for one of the almost-too-small rubber seats, and I began rocking my legs back and forth.
I don’t know if you’ll recall this, but swinging is serious business. Especially when you’re pushing 30 and fighting gravity as I am.
Gratefully, without me even asking/begging, Mikael began to push me higher and higher into the sky. It’s hard to explain why I needed that, but apparently I did.
I needed to watch my feet soar above the gravel below, to spend a moment lost in the clouds instead of bogged down by the world and all its troubles. And I needed that time with my husband, knowing (and feeling) that he truly has my back.
When I first moved to Waco I remember having many a lunch on the playground out back. That was before a storm knocked over the slide, and before diligent coworkers planted seed for the little league fields now fenced in and waiting for spring.
It was long before Mikael swooped in, much less lour engagement, wedding, honeymoon, and now marriage.
Back then I remember feeling utterly alone during many of those lunch breaks, longing for a friend much less a soul mate to share mundane things like Mondays with.
I was terrified at the time to talk to my coworkers (who turned out to be super nice), much less to try meet anyone else in my new city, so I mostly stayed to myself.
But I wasn't really alone. And I realized this most deeply, not while working in the quiet office inside a church building, but in a more unlikely place… the familiarity of a swing set almost identical to the one I had frequented in elementary school.
I read books there. Took deep breaths there. Watched a bag of chips or two cast away by the wind there. (Sorry earth.)
But I also met God there. When I needed Him most, I called out on Him, and He was there. In the wind. In the quiet. In His Word. And in my heart. He was there.
Yesterday, though so much has changed in the last year, I again found comfort in that familiar place – somewhere between heaven and earth. (Cheesy I know!)
Yes, life is ever changing - it's both sunny and shadowed, simple and complicated, exhilarating and heartbreaking.
But no matter how many changes we face, there are still things that remain the same.
The joy of swinging is one of those things for me. I can’t imagine ever growing tired of feeling lost in the clouds the way I do when I swing.
Far more importantly, though, there’s God, who is and was and will be to come.
As a kid I don’t think I saw the appeal in a God that never changes. I couldn’t wait to grow up, to be somewhere else, someone different than the silent, nerdy girl in the Coke-bottle glasses… I was always looking forward to something just a bit down the road, so it was hard for me to understand why anyone, much less an omnipotent One, would stay the same forever.
But I think I’m slowly starting to get it... why, in a world that is constantly changing, it is important to have a Constant (to borrow a term from Lost), someone who both grounds you and propels you onward, ever forward.
I’m so thankful for a God like that. One I can count on to always, always have my back.
And now I am praying that He might also have all of me.