Christmas balls, candles, stockings, and holiday dishes… Each one goes back in their box, to be packed away for yet another year. Each one carries with it such memory, such precious moments, when we were not three, but four… When the lights were put, (not already realized on a pre-lit "fake" Christmas tree), but carefully woven around a real tree by a loving husband. When ornaments were hung, not by myself alone, with a little "help" from my two girls, but by me and my partner, together crafting something beautiful, our skills and preferences joined together, complimenting each other, always, to make something better as a whole, than the one.
Our Daddy ornaments, our Daddy stocking, our Daddy candle… Our pictures and snow globes… packed away in their boxes.
Father, I cannot do this. I have climbed and climbed and climbed. I am too tired. I am too drained.
My God leads me with gentleness.
In Genesis 33, 13-14, Jacob says to Esau, “My lord knows that the children are weak, and the flocks and herds which are nursing are with me. And if the men should drive them hard one day, all the flock will die. Please let my lord go on ahead before his servant. I will lead on slowly at a pace which the livestock that go before me, and the children, are able to endure, until I come to my lord in Seir.”
Another translation says (KJV), I will lead on softly.
I feel a bit ashamed when the world looks on me as weak, as wounded, as though a slow pace is something to be condescended, something less than. But my God honours me. He honours me with gentleness. He knows what we have been through and knows what we can handle. He calls us to tread on perilous roads and travel across vast deserts. But he leads us softly. He leads us with gentleness, not force or pressure.
Oh how thankful I am for the gentleness of God! How weary I am on my travels through grief, as a single mom, weary of big life decisions... How peaceful it is to rest in His kindness toward me. His tender care. His gentleness.
He leads me softly.
And in due time, I too will arrive at my destination.
Later, having traveled all the way from Paddan-aram, Jacob arrived safely at the town of Shechem, in the land of Canaan. (Genesis 33:18)
Later… How much later???
He leads me softly.