porchDear God,

I’m trying hard not to be ungrateful. You bless me so much, you have given so much for me, you are always there for me. I don’t mean to complain, but it’s lonely out here on the porch.

It isn’t like I’m angry that there’s a party going on inside. I’m glad for the faces I see as I peer through the window when they forget and leave the blinds open. I see their smiles and hear their laughter, smell the delicious food and hear strains of beautiful music now and then. I really am happy for them.

Every few weeks someone slips a note under the door that says, “Your time will come.” The first time it happened, I was beside myself with joy. I clutched it to my chest and danced around and nearly knocked over a planter in my happy-dance. I stood close to the door for days afterward, because it couldn’t be too much longer. Right?

After a while I moved back over to the porch swing to rest.

Sometimes a new guest arrives, and as she opens the door to go inside, I try to steal a glimpse into the brightly-lit interior, breathe deeply the aroma of home-cooked food. The door soon closes and the aroma dissipates and the music fades back to muffled and I hold their soft, velvety coats. And I wait.

I’ve grown progressively less excited over the notes under the door. They’ve become pieces of paper filled with empty words. I’m glad I can’t see who is sending them, because I don’t believe her any more.

I’ve been waiting here for a long time now, God. I was so sure I’m supposed to be here. Could it be the wrong porch? Could I have gotten the address wrong? I was just so sure.

I think maybe I’m starting to get it. “Your time will come” really means “Your time is not now.” And I’m going to have to be okay with that.

There’s a small pile of notes just outside the door, but the March wind will soon blow them away. I don’t read them any more.

I have something much more valuable than scribbled scraps of paper. The Letter you gave me never leaves my side, and it will go with me when I make my way bravely down the porch steps and out into the yard and down the dusty country lane. I carry you with me, because with you, it is always my time. Your Words are never hollow.

One day my journey will lead me down another drive to another porch where the door is open and arms are welcoming and the music spills outside and the aromas waft on the breeze through open windows and fluttering curtains.

It is a spectacular party, and I am invited. Your Letter reminds me of these things, and I am grateful. Your Words give me hope.

I must say Amen now. I have some walking to do.

 

______________

A Write Where It Hurts column post

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