This past weekend, 20 adults and 20 kids converged on a small island off the coast of South Carolina. Friends and their husbands and their kiddos and lots of sand. It was beautiful.
Stepping out onto the beach the other night with daughter and friend, your breath was all around me, warm, muggy, pressing in. I couldn’t breathe it deeply enough at first and then I stopped concentrating. You were as close as the salty particles worked into my pores and as real as the sand between my toes. You were the wind that whipped the American flag on the pole that marked our path back as we walked hundreds of yards into the darkness.
You were in the din of conversations about health, having and raising babies and aging parents.
In babies fussing.
In kids making human sandwiches on the couch.
In giggles behind pillow forts below the counter.
In hands that prepared our evening meal.
In embraces exchanged, some after 13 years, others after a few minutes.
In the pitch dark as the men gathered conspiratorially in circles, and by day as their faces reddened with steam and heat over grills stacked with corn on the cob.
In the faces of moms and dads who may or may not have meant to fall asleep next to little ones at nap time.
As we met from all points of the globe: Nicaragua, Spain, Cali, New York…
You were there because you love us and are with us wherever we go.
Psalm 139: 7-10
Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.