This past weekend the members of our family gathered in Cincinnati for some important life events.
We celebrated many birthdays, the one of most importance being the 80th birthday of my mother-in-law, the person who has been on this earth the longest in our immediate family.
We also witnessed the baptism of my niece, who has the least experience among us.
This is Kande, with Kadja, who is 1, and her grandma, Janis, who is 80.
During Kadja’s baptism this thought ran through my head….that in very simple terms our faith allows us to learn from the past, make better people of ourselves in the present, and gives us hope for the future.
During the events of this past weekend and during this Holy Week that is upon us, the past, the present, and the future merged in very wonderful ways.
Project 52’s photo challenge of the week is about leaping.
In my life I believe three things have required great leaps. The day I got married, each of the days I gave birth, and every single time I kneel down to pray.
Every single time.
I’m not a particularly superstitious person but every once in a while I become one.
When life turned inside out this past November a friend came to the house and gave me this necklace. I thought it’s message was beautiful and it was exactly what I needed. The cross is designed to slip through the heart and hang below it, just as I knew I needed to allow all that I loved to slip through my heart and into God’s grace and protection.
I vowed not to take it off until my world felt safer and later added a very specific level of safeness.
But I didn’t trust in the design of the necklace. I would wake up at night and check to see that the cross had not slipped up out of the heart and from around my neck. During the day my hand would go there countless times to make sure it was still intact. Many times I would discover that the cross had indeed begun to work it’s way through. I would panic. I became a superstitious person. I was convinced that if it did slip through and the necklace fell off, that all would be lost in my son’s life and so I would almost frantically try to force the cross back through the heart. It never worked.
What did work was when I would calmly turn away from the mirror and very gently bring the cross back through. Over time I learned that the cross was not going to slip through. I learned to trust in the design of the necklace. I learned that the heart would allow the cross to enter into it but not through it.
It has taken me a lot longer to learn that I need to trust God, that he will not leave my own heart. I’m working on that one.
And I’m still superstitious. I made a promise that I wouldn’t take it off until a certain things happen and so yes, you will see the necklace on me for a while yet, to include when I’m in my ball gown Saturday night. Call it a superstition, call it a promise, call it silly, but to me this necklace is a reminder that love and faith can conquer even the darkest of nights.
And it’s a reminder to trust. In God…in people…in family…in the power of love.