I lay in the bed I used to share with my husband, the toddler’s tiny form tucked in beside me, listening as her breathing settles into sleep. My eyes are open, but I cannot see, save for the sliver of light coming from the hall. The darkness feels like a metaphor.
Marrett’s death is exactly like all the light has suddenly gone out of my life. I cannot see where I’m going now, or how I can possibly get wherever I’m supposed to go next. I’m a pastor, but Marrett feels so completely gone that I’m not sure I believe in heaven anymore. Someday soon I will have lots of words for God, and angry ones, but today I have none.
Yet even in this darkness, there’s a sliver. It’s light, yes, but painful. Slivers only find their way in when you are rubbed over something splintered and broken. The sliver is you, dear ones, sharing my pain and offering your prayers in place of mine. The light is getting in to this great darkness through your hugs and your meals and your fixing the things that can actually be fixed.
I’ve long told the people I pastor that the community of faith is there to rise up around you in your weakness, their faith standing in for yours when you are afraid, their love a mirror of the Love that is above all. Either you listened to me well, or you’ve figured this out for yourselves, because you are doing exactly that. I’m having trouble trusting God, but I trust you to hold me and my children until we can find our way again.
My hope is a tiny sliver, enlivened by your kindness. Thank you for entering the tomb with me, and inviting me by your lived faith to believe in what I cannot see.