30 October 2015

a revisit

I spent some time last night with my friend who was mentioned in my July post. The one with the rare muscle disease. I have seen her four or five times since then and we've become even better friends.

As i watched her try and eat, it occured to me that in a small way, she is experiencing a bit of the suffering of Christ. When on the cross he was trapped, in agonizing pain, unable to move. Could not feed himself, could not wipe his face, could not pick up a cup of water, could not cover himself.

While my friend is not nailed to a cross, she is also trapped and cannot move. She has to be fed, and covered and watched over. tapping out a few sentences takes an hour.

I told her what i was thinking, that she was experiencing a tiny bit of the suffering of Christ. I don't know if she agreed with me or not. She just looked at me. We shared a prayer. I went home. Got a glass of water all by myself. Fed myself. Put myself to bed.

29 October 2015

The small things become the big things

On weekends I volunteer at a hospice. I do little things like greet visitors, give tours, make coffee, answer the phone. Some days I do bigger things, comfort a family, be a companion to the dying, become their last new friend.

A few weeks ago I watched a one-year old proudly step across a room. She is my granddaughter and she is mastering the skill of walking. It reminded me of how common daily things we take for granted. A skill that it has taken her months to master she will quickly become accustomed to.

For many of us there will come a day when all these little things we think of as easy, become hard. Picking up a cup when thirsty and successfully putting it back down. Wrapping oneself in a blanket when cold. Not drooling on yourself. Being able to say "thank you", for a kindness. 

These are big deals on the front side of life and perhaps even bigger on the back side. All that time in between, we just do them.