July 29, 2008

the ways our lives go on

This week is shaping up into a sort of microcosm of existence crammed into seven days. Sunday Allen's mom called to tell us that a very special older woman had died after being sick for two weeks. She had mentored my mother-in-law for I don't how many years and had likewise counseled Allen on various occasions. Later Allen and I both went to see her on several occasions. Allen would check over her office computer for her (she ran a small herbal health store) while we talked. To say that sounds misleading. Really we saved up our troubles and triumphs to pour out at her feet and receive her counsel. Louise Allred was unlike anyone I've ever met. She was a forthright lady who wasn't afraid to ask hard questions, and it took guts to ask for her counsel because she could turn you inside out and reveal all the fears and petty rebellions standing between you and life. It could hurt like heck too. The first time I met her that's 90% of what I say -and a forthright old woman with at least half the Bible neatly indexed and labeled. Then I realized how much she loved people -how much she loved Allen and I in particular. I saw her unending generosity towards us and others in the way she gave of her wisdom, time, and money. Seed planting she called it. I saw her cheerful spirit even after having broken her hip and being limited to a walker. In her direct manner she taught the rock hard, reliable supremacy of God's Word over every trouble and circumstance in our lives. Her death was akin to a door closing. I find myself scrambling to remember everything she tried to teach me -wishing I'd had more time with her, grateful that much of her wisdom will live on in my mother-in-law.

The rest of this week has and will be crammed with time with friends, a memorial service, trip planning, a wedding, more time with friends, visits to family...there has and will be pain, compromise, generosity, confusion, pleasure, boredom, love, grief, expectation, laughter, anxiety... This week is crammed with life. And I am already tired.

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