Tag Archives: sacred

Whispers

I never knew why older people cried at weddings. It seemed obvious to me that it was  a happy time. I didn’t get it.

I met Julie when I was an 18-year-old freshman at Texas A&M. We decided to be roommates the next year and have been close friends since then.

I’ll never forget the day I picked her up from her workplace for lunch. My newly married friend got in my car as pale as the palest ghost. I said, “What is wrong with you?” She swallowed her nausea and managed the word “pregnant.” We were both stunned. We’d never done pregnancy before.

Five babies, many milestones, lots of life, challenging jobs, countless lunches and shopping sprees later, the baby she was pregnant with thirty years ago got married, this past Saturday night.

Suddenly, I’m the person in the congregation crying because, oh my goodness…life!  Her baby boy looked the same as he always had except now he was the groom. My friend looked gorgeous as the glowing groom’s mom.

Our weekend was filled with celebrations and people we had not seen for years. The entire time I’m asking myself how this happened. How did the college girls get to be moms of adults?

When I was younger older people used to whisper to me the secrets of life. I was moving too fast to listen. It seemed like they were telling me something about babies growing fast and time flying.

Now, I’m the one whispering and crying happy tears in the pew because, to me, a wedding is so much more than two people marrying. It is a lifetime of moments, relationships, parenting, angst and friendship all squeezed into a few sacred Holy moments where love and hope once again emerge.

When all that awareness hits you at once, it’s bound to seep out in joy-filled tears.

Dr. Cindy Ryan is a pastor, writer, mom, Mimosa to Keller, breast cancer survivor and tearful wedding guest. She is speaking at The Well women’s event at First UMC Grapevine, Texas on February 8, 2018. Some tickets are still available at http://www.fumcg.org/cindyryan 

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Real Life Infused with the Sacred

I love the word infused.  It means to fill or pervade or even to soak, like a tea bag in a cup of water.

As school starts today, summer pretty much ends, except the hot, humid weather part. Everyone in my family started school today except the dog and me. Our daughter started her job today as a grown up speech pathologist.  Our middle son began his teaching and coaching career with his first day in the classroom today.  Our youngest began his junior year of high school.  My husband began his 30th-or so year in education.  While they were all out educating or being educated, I was left with a quiet house and a semi-empty schedule to reflect on the summer.

It has been infused with sacred summertime moments.  I made batch after batch of homemade ice cream this summer due to the no Blue Bell ice cream thing we had happening here.  There is something sacred about homemade ice cream, especially that first “test” bite right out of the container.

We all got to go the beach together for a week–porch time looking over the ocean, long walks in the mornings, shared meals, a 30th wedding anniversary, games, cards, good books, long naps, shrimp, shrimp, shrimp.  Sacred gifts all.

Lake time. There was lake time for my husband, puppy and me.  More porch time looking over the water. Floating in the lake, becoming a landing pad for blue dragonflies. A nap on a screened in porch with a storm rolling through with thunder and everything.  I cried, I did, it was so relaxing, gorgeous and rainy.  Our friends joined us there too. People we’ve known for 35 years.  How sacred and deep are friendships like that?

At the Farmer’s Market sacred things happened this summer as we took our time and bought peaches, watermelon, vegetables, cantaloupe, tomatoes. The joy I had tipping the little girl who helped me. Doing the same exact thing again two weeks later to the same little girl.

In between it all, the rhythm of work, worship, our daily routines, ministry. In the midst of the summer,  school supplies were provided for all those children I was worried about plus 1600 new backpacks. The fair happened and it was a beautiful coming together of the community on behalf of children in need. It was infused with the sacred.

At church we are starting a new sermon series which explores how God is present in the routine and rituals of each day. I’m excited about it.  God, infusing our seasons. God infusing our days. Thanks be to God.      .