“Every good and perfect gift is from above, come down from the Father of the heavely lights, who does not change like the shifting shadows.” – James 1: 17
I like how Tuesdays are laundry day for the preschool house on the grounds of the school where I work, and every time I walk in to get the bag full of the week’s wipe ups from snack time and painting projects, it’s story time and the kids are gathered round the teacher eager, necks craning to see the pictures as she holds up the book. I close the door behind me on my way out and I smile at the warm I feel.
I look forward to the sameness of every morning when I wake the girl and she sleepy stumbles past me to her dressing room just off the kitchen, her eyes are slanty closed and she squeaks out “mornin.” I ask her the questions. “Sleep well? Want some coffee? What are you hungry for?”
I love how my co worker and I move around each other in the school kitchen like a well choreographed musical scene, each of us picking up where the other left off, the cheese cups all filled and put in rows just so, the dishes used and the dishes washed; scrub, rinse, santize, repeat. I know where things are and I know how to use them, the hum of the place predictable and sure and comforting.
I like how Silas sits at the table in the school store, always first in the door. Erick drops his back pack and heads for the bean bag chairs in the corner, makeshift bed till the bell rings. Tanner never fails to smile the brightest of smiles, Emma and her young charge, Griffin, follow close behind. She yearns to tell me what she’s dealing with and asks for advice. She listens intently and nods her head and heads down the hall with a hug. Shane sorts out the candy bowl, Neva never passes the door without coming in just to greet me. These are the rhythms, the motion of the morning. It feels familiar. It feels like home. I look for them like little beacons, assurances that I’m still on the path.
These “constants” are here for right now. They’re like candles in the window, little heart smiles. But next year, next month, next week, tomorrow……people move, kids grow up, clothes get outgrown, opinions shift, presidents get elected, supermoons come and go, you used to not like sweet potatoes and then one day you try them and turns out, you changed your mind.
My soul longs for constant. I stare out the window of my cozy sitting room, and look at the suns rays coming in as the day ends and begins to make ready to turn into Wednesday. The heat lays on my skin and feels like a hug. This changing world unnerves me sometimes. I jump from rock to rock in the life puddle and balance myself just so, wanting to stay there. And then the water washes up and I’m compelled to move on. It presses on me, this thought that this world isn’t my home, no matter how good it gets, no matter how bad it gets. It’s not where I will find that constant I feel hungry for. I know Who is though, and I sing to Him to steady myself when the unsureness sets in. ” I’m just a passin through.”
The days beat a faster cadence than they used to. My daughter is a mama now, my granddaughter and her teeth and steps and words and sounds are the focus of much oohs and ahs. She learns something every day. My boys are men , the legos stored away and I wait eagerly for special times when they each come back “home” for visits and their deep voices and tall statures still take me by surprise. I’ll see another girl get married soon, her hand taking hold of the man she’ll see changes with herself and off they’ll launch. And it’s sunrise and it’s sunset. And all is well, because He tells me He will still be there,
Of old you laid the foundation of the earth,
and the heavens are the work of your hands.
26 They will perish, but you will remain;
they will all wear out like a garment.
You will change them like a robe, and they will pass away,
27 but you are the same, and your years have no end.
28 The children of your servants shall dwell secure;
their offspring shall be established before you. Ps 102