Friday, June 3, 2016

Seasons ...

Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty five thousand moments so dear
Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure a year?
In daylights, in sunsets
In midnights, in cups of coffee
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife
In five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred minutes
How do you measure a year in the life?
How about love?
How about love?
How about love?
Measure in love

This song from Rent is a favourite for me because it says so much (and the harmonies rock).  This is the time of year I don't like.  Sometimes this time of year is easier than others, but this year ... oh this year.  This year it feels like pieces of me are being ripped out.

When you live life as an expat, Goodbyes are part of the cycle.  Sometimes you say so many goodbyes you don't want to form the relationships because relationships take time and quality relationships don't exist without sowing pieces of yourself into the relationship.  And holes are left when people move on.  Since being away, my metaphor for this has been a beautiful woven, handmade carpet.

Threads of different colours ... each one individual ... each one just a coloured thread, nothing special.  Yet ... when the master artist takes those threads and begins to weave, magic happens.  Threads are woven together, irrevocably, and something new ... something different ... something stunning emerges.  For a time the threads stay together and and its beautiful ... but every weaving has a point where the threads stop weaving together ... that work is done.  individual threads run out the ends once more ... and the weaving is cut from the loom.

Right now I am struggling with the cut.  It hurts.  It's so incredibly painful I can't even speak of it and I know that I am not the only one.  We say our goodbyes but we don't.  We laugh.  We cry.  We say "it's not goodbye ... I will be seeing you".  But in reality, who knows what life will bring.  And when you are in other countries spread out around the world, sometimes the world is a very big place.  And whilst social media and technology go a long way to closing that gap, they don't.  We now trade late night cups of coffee or card games and trash talk for a two line status update on someones life.  When you have been woven together with someone ... when you have walked through the deepest darkest valleys with them ... when you have scaled the heights ... when you have laughed ... cried ... sworn ... broken bread together ... seen each other at best and at worst ... the cutting of the threads is an excruciating thing.  So how do we deal with this grief ... with this sense of loss?

And here is where I love the lyrics of RENT
It's time now to sing out
Though the story never ends
Let's celebrate
Remember a year in the life of friends
Remember the love
(Oh, you got to, you got to remember the love)
Remember the love
(You know that love is a gift from up above)
Remember the love
(Share love, give love, spread love)
Measure in love
(Measure, measure your life in love)
Seasons of love (love)
Seasons of love (love)
(Measure your life, measure your life in love)
A spot of bother in the garden ...

Its's all about LOVE.  I would never trade the heartache and grief of these goodbyes because my life is so much richer for the weaving.  The gifts of friendship and love are irreplaceable.  You cannot buy them.  You cannot manipulate your way into having them.  They are freely given yet priceless in value.  

I have nothing but gratitude for this season and this time with these people I love.  I cannot imagine my life without these people in it.  There are people who walk through life in poverty.  Not material poverty ... I am speaking of the poverty of never understanding what it is to be loved and to love others.  To have the richness and depth of friendships where you have been woven with others and walked together for seasons, being intricately and intimately involved ... knowing the imperfections, the twists, the knots and seeing that they just add to the beauty of the weaving.

To my loved ones ... Coco, Heather, Nicole, Jeff, Aisha, Nicholas and Elise, who are closing a big chapter in their life journey and beginning the next ... my prayer for you is that you walk in freedom and peace ... knowing that he who led you here is leading you on ... he goes before you, behind you and his hand is upon you.  I love you.  I am forever grateful for all you are.  It has been my privilege ... my joy and my gift to walk with you in this season.  My heart goes with you.  Be free. xxx

Psalm 139
You hem me in behind and before
You have laid your hand upon me ...
If I rise on the wings of the dawn 
and settle on the far side of the sea, 
even there your hand will guide me
your right hand will hold me fast ...