October 20, 2007

Present only there

John 20:13

“Dear woman, why are you crying?” the angels asked her.

Because my dad’s gone, and I don’t know where he is.

Because I saw him cry like that.

Because twice, I held him as he cried.

Because of the loneliness of the people where he lived.

Because he left me a long time ago, and I miss him.

Because our reconciliation came only when he was so out of it.

Because I never saw him dead, and I don’t know whether he ever looked peaceful.

Because I saw a stranger feed him.

Because of his childlike moment of joy when the guitar man came.

Because I gave him so little such joy, but maybe somehow I could have?

Because no efforts to bring him relief or joy seemed to help.

Because to visit with God, I had to visit my dad.

Because while my dad was sick, Jesus seemed present only there.

Because Jesus’s compassion, like my mother’s, consisted of silent, patient presence.

Because we couldn’t fix it.